Wednesday, January 31, 2024

N.C. Commerce Awards Grants to Local Workforce Boards Supporting Sector Partnerships for Advanced Manufacturing, Clean Energy

Raleigh, N.C.
Jan 31, 2024

The North Carolina Department of Commerce has awarded business services grants to 14 local workforce development boards, totaling $490,000, Governor Roy Cooper announced today.

Workforce boards will use the grants to convene local and regional partners and employers, and to plan and develop strategies and initiatives for evidence-based, in-demand industry sector partnerships to meet the needs of businesses in subsectors of Advanced Manufacturing, including those focused on clean energy.

“North Carolina is one of the top states for manufacturing and a leader in the emerging clean energy economy, bringing good-paying jobs across our state,” Governor Cooper said. “We must continue to partner with companies so that they can fill all the good jobs they’re creating while training hard-working North Carolinians with the skills these industries require.”

Based on a framework provided by the U.S. Department of Labor, sector partnerships, or sector strategies, bring together multiple employers within a critical industry, along with government agencies, education, economic development, workforce development systems, and other community organizations to identify and collaboratively meet the workforce needs of that industry within a regional labor market. Sector strategies enable employers to set the agenda by identifying and addressing their specific needs. Workforce boards may use these grant funds to plan and launch new sector partnerships or to enhance partnerships that already exist.

“Our state’s First in Talent Plan calls for expanding sector partnerships with private-sector leadership, and these new grants help to accomplish that objective, while also supporting some of our most important industries,” said N.C. Commerce Secretary Machelle Baker Sanders. “We look forward to continuing to work with our NCWorks partners and businesses to meet the talent needs of manufacturers and innovative clean energy companies.”

The local Workforce Development Boards (WDBs) receiving a $35,000 grant include:

  • Cape Fear WDB (Brunswick, Columbus, New Hanover and Pender counties);
  • Capital Area WDB (Chatham, Johnston, Lee, Orange and Wake counties);
  • Centralina WDB (Anson, Cabarrus, Iredell, Lincoln, Rowan, Stanly and Union counties);
  • Durham WDB (Durham County);
  • Eastern Carolina WDB (Carteret, Craven, Duplin, Greene, Jones, Lenoir, Onslow, Pamlico and Wayne counties);
  • Foothills WDB (Cleveland, McDowell, Polk and Rutherford counties);
  • Gaston County WDB (Gaston County);
  • GuilfordWorks WDB (Guilford County);
  • High Country WDB (Alleghany, Ashe, Avery, Mitchell, Watauga, Wilkes and Yancey counties);
  • Kerr-Tar WDB (Franklin, Granville, Person, Vance and Warren counties);
  • Northeastern WDB (Camden, Chowan, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Hyde, Pasquotank, Perquimans, Tyrrell and Washington counties);
  • Piedmont Triad Regional WDB (Alamance, Caswell, Davidson, Davie, Forsyth, Randolph, Rockingham, Stokes, Surry and Yadkin counties);
  • Rivers East WDB (Beaufort, Bertie, Hertford, Martin and Pitt counties);
  • Southwestern WDB, in conjunction with MountainWest Partnership (Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Jackson, Macon and Swain counties).

Employers interested in partnerships should contact a local Workforce Development Board or a local NCWorks Career Center through



This is a WIOA Title I program/project, which is supported by the Employment and Training Administration of the U.S. Department of Labor as part of an award to North Carolina totaling $68,687,004, with 0% financed from non-governmental sources.


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