Skill UP ROUND 3


July 7, 2017

Click here for the planning phase application.


More than 1 million Indiana jobs will be available over the next decade, and more than a third will be new jobs that do not exist today.  It is estimated that 27,000 job openings per year require an industry-recognized certificate/certification in addition to a high school diploma.  Approximately 13,500 certificates are earned annually in Indiana in either high school or post-secondary, but only 9,200 of these certificates are in high-demand, high-wage (HDHW) fields.  DWD has identified 109 occupations which align with many of these opportunities.

To address this gap, DWD will offer up to $20 million in grant funding during the next biennium to support Innovation Networks, which include Sector Partnerships.  Innovation Networks should be centered around employers, educators, economic and workforce development partners, as well as other critical community partners in order to skill up students, adults, and incumbent workers within a regional labor market.  Sector Partnerships include multiple employers within a critical industry and brings together education, economic development, workforce systems, and community organizations to identify and collaboratively meet the workforce needs of that particular industry.


The vision is to create a series of networks around the State of Indiana driven by the needs of employers.  These would include education and training providers committed to leveraging shared resources, teaching against the same set of skills and competencies, and serving all Hoosiers (including secondary students, post-secondary students, adult education students, and incumbent workers), while avoiding duplication of efforts and fostering collaboration around this work.


In order to receive funding, the network must be prepared to meet certain outcomes, follow a comprehensive and rigorous process for decision making and have all relevant partners engaged.

Intended Outcomes include:

  • Understand employer demand for high-wage high-demand middle skill occupations in your community, including the skills and competencies associated with those occupations;
  • Ensure that education and training providers create, align or scale curriculum and programs that address employer needs, put learners on a pathway to HDHW occupations, and are stackable into additional credentials or training;
  • Provide Hoosiers with the opportunity to pursue high-wage high-demand programming that is easily accessible and relevant to employer needs in their county/geographic area;
  • Increase the number of high school graduates, adult learners and incumbent workers with a high-wage high-demand industry recognized credential;
  • Establish a network of shared resources, such as physical space (co-location), equipment and braided funding sources; and
  • Create employer training funds available ONLY to employers to create work-based-learning programs and training programs such as Internships, Registered Apprenticeships and Incumbent Worker Training, focused on stackable training leading to additional credentials or education, allowing employers to “draw down” funds as needed to fulfill their training needs.

Guidelines, Resources & FAQs

  • Click here to access customizable data for the 109 occupations.

To view only the 109 occupations data uncheck (“Non Middle Skills Occupations”) below the graphic.

To customize data, download the Excel file at the bottom of the screen and follow the Instructions page.

Click here for Round 1 and Round 2 information.


Step I: Planning Phase

Deadline: July 14, 2017

Entities planning to apply for a Skill UP Indiana! grant must first apply for the planning phase by July 14, 2017.

  • Click here for more information about step I of the planning phase and the planning phase application.
  • Click here for the planning phase application.

Step II:  Planning Phase Implementation

Dates: July 17 – October 1, 2017

Applicants must participate in the planning grant process in which DWD leads the designated employer advisory groups in validating demand, using DWD provided data, and identifying industry challenges and issues.  This process will include:  Identifying Priority Sectors; Industry Engagement; Convening Employer Advisory Groups; and Developing Solutions. Click here for more information about step II of planning phase.

Step III: Final Proposal

Deadline: TBD

Applicants must submit a final proposal. Grantees will be announced and grant funded activities will begin in early 2018.  Successful applicants will create industry focused solutions based on information received and lessons learned during the planning process.

June 5, 2017 Announcement of Opportunity
July 5, 2017 Release of Full Grant Guidelines
July 7, 2017 Informational Webinar
July 14, 2017 Planning Phase Application Due
July 17 – October 1, 2017 Planning Phase Process Implementation
TBD Final Proposal Deadline
TBD Announcement of Awards
TBD Grant Activities Begin

For more information regarding Skill UP reach out to Charles “Ricky” Reeves at

* Round 1 and 2 Skill UP award winners are eligible to apply.  However, they are not eligible to seek funding for programs and initiatives that were previously funded through Skill UP.