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Northwest Michigan Businesses Receive $1.7 Million From Going PRO Talent Fund

News Release
February 9, 2023

NORTHWEST, MI – Businesses in Northwest Michigan will receive $1,700,109 for employee training from the state’s Going PRO Talent Fund in 2023. Of the 66 applications, 54 employers from the 10-county Northwest region were awarded the requested funds. Employers will use the funding to train 1,020 new and existing employees across the region. 70 apprentices are among those being trained. Award recipients in Northwest Michigan include businesses in multiple industries such as construction, manufacturing, healthcare, hospitality, agribusiness, outdoor recreation, banking, information technology, and energy.  Businesses applied for the Talent Fund grants with assistance from the Northwest Michigan Works! Business Services team.

“The Going PRO Talent Fund helps workers get the skills they need to build their lives and advance their careers in Michigan,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “Let’s keep our foot on the accelerator as we grow our economy, create unparalleled economic opportunity, and empower more people to Make it in Michigan.”

Statewide in 2023, $47,841,555 from the Going PRO Talent Fund is helping nearly 27,000 workers secure employment, industry-recognized credentials, and strong wages by providing training grants to more than 750 Michigan businesses to support their high-demand, high-skill talent needs. 

“We’re excited that so many of our local businesses are able to take advantage of these training funds,” said Rob Dickinson, Regional Director of Business Services for Northwest Michigan Works!. “These grant awards allow our region to enhance the skill sets and value of so many individuals which in turn makes our region’s employers more competitive and attractive in today’s economy. We can’t wait for round two.”

The second round of applications will be open May 1 until May 24. Information sessions, where you can learn more about the grants, are being scheduled for April. Businesses that are interested should contact their Northwest Michigan Works! Business Services Representative or visit for more information. 

A full list of Going PRO Talent Fund grants is available at,

Since the program's launch in 2014, more than 6,000 Michigan businesses have received Talent Fund awards to assist in training, developing and retaining newly hired and current employees. Training must fill a demonstrated talent need experienced by the employer and lead to a credential for a skill that is transferable and recognized by industry. The Going PRO Talent Fund has supported approximately 170,000 workers with training over the years.

Networks Northwest always proves to be a valued resource for our local government planning efforts. No organization does a better job of convening partners, promoting collaboration, and reporting on the data than does Networks Northwest
- Ty Wessell, Leelanau County Commissioner