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AMIkids Expands Vocational Education Opportunities Thanks to New Funding

by Shawna Vercher | Nov 05, 2015
AMIkids has received additional support to grow its vocational education efforts. The organization received an additional grant from the U.S. Department of Labor, as well as funds from the Florida Legislature, to support and expand vocational education at local programs.

AMIkids has received additional support to grow its vocational education efforts. The organization received an additional grant from the U.S. Department of Labor, as well as funds from the Florida Legislature, to support and expand vocational education at local programs.

Welding at AMIkids BeaufortIn January 2015, AMIkids implemented vocational education programs funded by the first of two $5 million U.S. Department of Labor Face Forward grants. Vocational education programs at the following eight AMIkids locations were funded by the first DOL grant: AMIkids White Pines, AMIkids Piedmont, AMIkids Big Cypress, AMIkids Space Coast, AMIkids YES, AMIkids Miami-Dade North, AMIkids Miami-Dade South and AMIkids Bennettsville.

(Photo: A student at AMIkids Beaufort works on developing his welding skills.)

The second U.S. Department of Labor grant funded vocational programs at six additional programs: AMIkids Acadiana, AMIkids Beaufort, AMIkids Baton Rouge, AMIkids Gainesville, AMIkids Panama City and AMIkids Pensacola. Since January 2015, over 350 students have been enrolled and are receiving training with the goal of earning industry-recognized certifications and jobs.

The Florida Legislature leveraged the federal dollars and provided funds to add vocational training and job placement to additional Florida youth. AMIkids Greater Ft. Lauderdale, AMIkids Southwest Florida and AMIkids Tampa were added to the programs providing these services.

In October 2015, AMIkids Pensacola received additional positive news: a $106,000 grant from IMPACT 100 Pensacola Bay Area.  This grant will fund a new facility to house a construction classroom, materials and equipment, providing students with practical training and experience to aid in obtaining industry certifications.

"The beauty of this program is that it guides the kids down a path to a successful future,” says AMIkids Pensacola Executive Director Jeffrey Jean-Jacques. “We are so excited to offer our kids the tools they need to enter the workforce and become productive citizens. When our kids have jobs, our community is stronger."

With the funding from these grants, AMIkids has been able to implement vocational education programs in Information Technology, food service, construction and health care.  AMIkids continues to seek additional funding so that more programs can offer vocational education and job placement services to their students.


Media Inquiries:
Joseph Gallina, Director of Marketing & Communications
813-249-3739
JGallina@AMIkids.org