Governor Mark Gordon was one of eight governors invited to join President Donald Trump and Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta in a bipartisan roundtable discussion Thursday focused on workforce-related topics.
Other attendees included Governors Doug Ducey of Arizona, Brian Kemp of Georgia, David Ige of Hawaii, Kim Reynolds of Iowa, Chris Sununu of New Hampshire, Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania and Bill Lee of Tennessee.
The discussion focused on occupational licensing reform, advancing childcare policies, and providing quality job training to all Americans.
For his part, Gov. Gordon highlighted the Wyoming Works program, which was drafted under legislation passed earlier this year. The program is intended to help expand technical and trade programs at Wyoming community colleges and provide grants to make it affordable for students.
Gordon pointed to the immediate and anticipated demand for skilled workers in the trade industries throughout the state, touting contributions from private industry as a way to help fill these occupational gaps. Wyoming was also recognized as one of the states with the least occupational licensing burdens.
“I appreciate President Trump’s leadership in convening this bipartisan group of governors and listening to our perspectives,” Gov. Gordon said in a release. “We had a productive, wide-ranging discussion about a spectrum of issues important to Wyoming, including the H2A and H2B visa programs, trade and the USMCA, workforce initiatives, and rural healthcare.”
Gordon lauded Wyoming’s effort to expand vocational education opportunities in effort to develop a nimble workforce. To this end, Gordon reiterated that the state had recently applied for a State Apprenticeship Expansion Grant from the U.S. Department of Labor to expand apprenticeship opportunities in Wyoming. If awarded, the state would receive $641,075.32 to implement both system-level and program-level activities to add more registered apprenticeship programs and recruit apprentices to fill the programs.
“The President’s apprenticeship grant program is an avenue for Wyoming to pursue financial support for building out our workforce,” Gov. Gordon said. “My goal is to help Wyomingites gain the skills needed to improve the quality of their work, their take home pay, and ultimately to create better lives for themselves and their families.”