Going PRO Talent Fund Helps More than 800 Michigan Businesses Train and Retain Employees 

December 13, 2023


LANSING, Mich.— Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced more than 800 Michigan businesses will receive around $54,000, on average, to help them train, develop and retain more than 28,000 current and newly hired employees. Launched in 2014, more than 173,000 Michiganders have received high-skill, in-demand job training through the initiative. 


“Michigan’s economic strength depends on our ability to equip Michiganders with the skills they need to get good-paying, high-skill jobs in industries of the future,” said Governor Whitmer. “The Going PRO Talent Fund proves our strong commitment to workforce development. By investing in training, we can meet current talent needs and help Michiganders learn the skills they need to earn more and provide for themselves and their families. Together, we have driven our unemployment rate to historic lows, seen strong job growth, and continue building the future of high-tech, high-growth industries.” 


Michigan’s economic landscape is rapidly evolving and the Going PRO Talent Fund stands as a beacon of support for businesses navigating these changes. The Going PRO Talent Fund plays a crucial role in growing and boosting Michigan’s economy by helping businesses train workers to support their in-demand, high-skill needs. 


“These funds represent more than dollars; they symbolize Michigan’s commitment to empowering individuals, building thriving communities, and positioning our state as a national leader in workforce development,” said Susan Corbin, Director of LEO. “With this latest group of grant awardees, we celebrate not just the present success of the Going PRO Talent Fund but the boundless potential it holds for our state’s economic landscape.” 


These businesses will receive a combined $45M from the Going PRO Talent Fund to finance training initiatives, empowering individuals with the skills required to secure employment in high-demand sectors. The Going PRO Talent Fund plays a crucial role in alleviating the immediate demand for a skilled workforce, bridging the gap between job openings and the availability of qualified professionals. Through its commitment to training, development and retention, the fund not only caters to the evolving demands of Michigan’s job market but also propels the state’s economic growth. 


“Going PRO Talent Fund is a win-win for Michigan businesses and their employees,” said Brian Calley, President and CEO of the Small Business Association of Michigan. “Employees gain new credentials and certifications, leading to higher wages. At the same time, employers benefit from the skills their employees have acquired. Without question, the Going PRO Talent Fund gives Michigan businesses a strategic advantage on attracting, retaining, and training their workforce with the right skills to help them be successful.” 


LEO awards are distributed from the Going PRO Talent Fund directly to employers, facilitated by Michigan Works! Agencies (MWAs). Engaged employers take an active role in pinpointing their essential training needs and collaborate closely with their local MWAs and other partners to shape precise and strategic training plans. 


“Our state’s economic vitality relies on a workforce equipped with the right skills. LEO is actively working to address the high demand for the program, advocating for increased funding to meet the needs of businesses eager to participate in Going PRO which is our commitment to bridging the gap between employer needs and workforce capabilities, fostering growth and prosperity for all,” said Stephanie Beckhorn, director of LEO’s Office of Employment and Training


To learn more about the Going PRO Talent Fund and its impact, please visit Michigan.gov/TalentFund.