Tallahassee, Fla. – The CareerSource Florida Board of Directors today applauded the recommendation by Governor Ron DeSantis to invest $534 million in workforce education and training to ensure Floridians have the necessary resources to meet today’s high-demand, high-wage workforce needs.

“Governor DeSantis is a true champion for workforce education, and our board applauds the prioritization of funds for career and technical education, apprenticeships and workforce training in the Governor’s Freedom First Budget,” said CareerSource Florida Board Chair Stephanie Smith, senior director of government relations for Anthem, Inc. “This investment will provide Floridians greater access to state-of-the-art workforce training as well as the many benefits of apprenticeship opportunities, and Florida’s businesses can count on top-notch talent to stay competitive.”

The Governor’s Freedom First Budget proposes the following:

Workforce Training

  • $7.5 million for Quick Response Training – administered  by CareerSource Florida, this grant program provides a reimbursement match for customized training to new or expanding businesses needing to train new hires.
  • $3 million for Incumbent Worker Training – administered by CareerSource Florida, this grant program helps provide employees with opportunities to acquire new or improved skills by earning a credential on Florida’s Master Credentials List, helps hospitals provide nurses with opportunities to acquire new or improved skills, and supports training for current employees at businesses with 25 or fewer employees, in rural or urban distressed areas, and in qualified target industries.
  • $35 million in funding to continue the Open Door Grant Program at Florida’s school district workforce institutions and colleges.
  • $100 million for a workforce development capitalization incentive. Grants through this incentive will be used for instructional equipment, laboratory equipment, supplies, or other expenses associated with a workforce development program.

Apprenticeship Expansion

  • $15 million, an increase of $5 million, for the Governor’s Pathways to Career Opportunities Grant Program to establish or expand pre-apprenticeship and apprenticeship programs for high school and college students.

“Under Governor DeSantis, Florida is leading the nation in job growth, and the Freedom First Budget will create additional opportunities for businesses to grow and Floridians to prosper,” said CareerSource Florida President and CEO Michelle Dennard. “The Governor’s budget proposal advances the collaborative work of CareerSource Florida and our partners at the Department of Education, Department of Economic Opportunity and Department of Children and Families to create a no-wrong-door approach to ensuring Floridians have equitable access to the resources needed to secure meaningful, rewarding employment.”

Visit this link for more information about the Governor’s Freedom First budget. To find your nearest career center, visit the Find Local Team page on CareerSource Florida’s website.


CareerSource Florida, with its business-led board of directors, provides policy direction for talent development programs administered by the Department of Economic Opportunity, Florida’s 24 local workforce development boards and their 100 career centers. The CareerSource Florida State Board serves as the Governor’s principal workforce policy and investment board, working in partnership with DEO, which is responsible for the state workforce system’s fiscal and administrative affairs, and local workforce development boards that serve Florida’s businesses and career seekers. Together, the CareerSource Florida network connects employers with qualified, skilled talent and Floridians with employment and career development opportunities to achieve economic prosperity. Learn more at careersourceflorida.com.