Governor Sununu Announces Largest Investment in Workforce in New Hampshire History
Concord, NH – Yesterday, Governor Chris Sununu joined by CCSNH Chancellor Ross Gittell and USNH Chancellor Todd Leach announced the largest investment into the next generation of workforce in New Hampshire history. The initiative aims to address the acute workforce shortage in New Hampshire's healthcare industry, while also investing in the future of New Hampshire's STEM workforce.
"This initiative represents the largest investment in the future of New Hampshire's workforce in our state's history,' said Governor Chris Sununu. "In our ever-changing economy, we must make strategic one-time investments to meet the long-term skilled workforce needs of our state and ensure the next generation has the opportunities available to advance their careers."
"Today's announcement continues a commitment I made last year to the Community College and University System to invest in the future of education in our state. That commitment included a $3.3 million increase in the Community College System's operating budget, nearly $2 million through dual and concurrent enrollment, and nearly $1.5 million for students through the Governor's Scholarship program. Today, we are committing to invest nearly $24 million into Nursing and STEM programs across the University System and once again launching a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program at the Community College Level. I would like to commend the Community College System and University System for being critical partners in ensuring a better future for New Hampshire's workforce."
Ross Gittell, Chancellor of the Community College System of New Hampshire, said of today's announcement "I would like to commend the Governor for his leadership and foresight in addressing the important issues facing New Hampshire's workforce. It is great to be joined today by some of the nursing students currently going through Community College RN program, who will become registered nurses in our state and integral to meeting New Hampshire's healthcare workforce needs. We are also excited to be relaunching the LPN program, with state support, to meet acute regional demand in our state's nursing homes. Our economy is only as strong as the investment we make into our people, and at our community colleges, ninety-three percent of our students are New Hampshire residents. Our graduates become New Hampshire's skilled professionals and the foundation of a strong economy. While today's announcement does not encompass capital investment within the community colleges, we look forward to working with the Governor on planned investments in the community colleges in order to ensure a highly skilled, local New Hampshire workforce for our businesses and economy. "
Todd Leach, Chancellor of the University System of New Hampshire, said "This is an innovative initiative that will have significant impact on some of our state's most pressing workforce needs. The investment will allow us to double nursing enrollments while also introducing new programs in healthcare and advanced manufacturing. The initiative is not only innovative in its specific content, but also in the fact that this was a strongly collaborative effort with direct engagement of the Governor and industry leaders. In fact, it was the Governor who brought BAE Systems and Keene State together to develop a precision optics program that will meet immediate and long-term needs as part of this initiative. This investment is also innovative in that it is designed to build lasting capacity with one-time investment. We applaud the Governor's leadership on this innovative workforce initiative."