COLUMBUS — Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine and Lt. Gov. Jon Husted, who serves as director of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation, has announced the application period for the Super RAPIDS grant program is now open.
Super RAPIDS (Regionally Aligned Priorities in Delivering Skills) focuses on providing Ohio Technical Centers, community colleges, and universities with the right kind of equipment to prepare students for the workforce, helping to meet the needs of regional businesses.
“To continue Ohio’s momentum, students must be trained and ready for jobs in tech and advanced manufacturing,” said DeWine in a press release. “We championed Super RAPIDS in the state budget to ensure that training providers have the right kind of resources and equipment needed to educate the next generation for the jobs of the future.”
“As we prepare for computer chip and advanced manufacturing supply chain jobs, it’s crucial to support and create new lab and manufacturing technology spaces for educating graduates with the most advanced skills through higher education,” said Husted in the release. “This program helps Ohio Technical Centers, community colleges and universities purchase the latest equipment to educate more students on the most up-to-date technology needed for the 21st century economy.”
The state budget provides $100 million through Super RAPIDS initiatives. The program will help address urgent workforce development needs and provides a one-time funding boost to the traditional RAPIDS program. For this grant opportunity, $40 million is available through a competitive RFP process. As a comparison, through six rounds of the traditional RAPIDS program, a total of $47.3 million has been awarded.
RAPIDS grants are used to purchase equipment for use in classrooms specific to regional workforce needs. These classrooms are often shared among colleges and universities, expanding the reach of the equipment and allowing more students to get an affordable, high-quality education. Examples of industries served through the program include Advanced Manufacturing, IT and Cybersecurity, Broadband/5G, Healthcare, and Robotics.
“Super RAPIDS provides campuses with an enhanced opportunity to prepare their students for high-demand jobs,” said Ohio Department of Higher Education Chancellor Randy Gardner in the release. “I encourage colleges and technical centers to take advantage of this funding boost and strive to make even greater contributions to Ohio’s skilled workforce.”
The application period for Super RAPIDS will run from Sept. 5 to Oct. 5 at 5 p.m.