Bizzarro announces more than $250K to help high school grads

Grant money will support registered pre-apprentice programs

ERIE, Jan. 11 – High school graduates and workers in pre-apprenticeship programs will be receiving added support in Erie County and the northwest region thanks to a state grant announced by Rep. Ryan Bizzarro Wednesday morning.

Early Connections, which serves Erie County and the northwest region, has been approved for a $250,000 state grant through the Schools-To-Work Program.

“I’m proud of the work my office did to ensure the state provided the funding needed for Early Connections,” Bizzarro said. “The state is working to improve our workforce, particularly in providing reasons for young people to remain in Pennsylvania, and Early Connections helps provide a direct link for high school graduates to the resources they need.”

One of just 11 programs approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry for grant money through its Schools-To-Work Program, Early Connections serves the northwest region by offering services and support for registered pre-apprentices. Early Connections connects these pre-apprentices to employment options or the post-secondary education they need to pursue – such as finding the pathway to pursue the credentials they need to succeed.

Early Connections serves Erie, Clarion, Crawford, Forest, Lawrence, Mercer, Venango and Warren counties.

Bizzarro’s office completed casework for individuals in 64 of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties during the most recent legislative session. His office helped secure about $50 million in state money for nonprofits, small businesses, schools and industry last year. Residents can find his most up-to-date Grant & Resource Directory on his website or by reaching out to his offices in Erie or Harrisburg.