January 29th, 2024
Mankato – Greater Mankato Growth has been awarded $40,000 from the Greater Twin Cities United Way (GTCUW) to help enhance existing work-based learning opportunities in the region and develop new ones. The funding, which was made available through a partnership between GTCUW and the Minnesota Chamber Foundation, supports Greater Mankato Growth’s decade long history of making workforce development a priority. These funds also support the strategic initiatives of the Regional Economic Development Alliance (REDA) to engage in workforce development and resident retention initiatives.
“Through work-based learning opportunities, students are able to realize what fantastic opportunities exist at local employers,” said Ryan Vesey, Business Development Director at Greater Mankato Growth. “By making these connections, we hope that more students will stay in the community after high school or college.”
Greater Mankato Growth collaborated with Mankato Area Public Schools on this grant proposal and the district will be receiving $20,000 of this funding to support their work-based learning department. Greater Mankato Growth has added additional staff to the economic development team to support these initiatives.
Caleb Watson, Career Pathway Coordinator at Mankato Area Public Schools, said: “Mankato Area Public Schools is excited to be using the funding to enhance our future-focused career exploration model, EXPLORE, EXPERIENCE, and ENGAGE. This support will facilitate valuable connections between students and local employers, providing meaningful opportunities for hands-on career exploration, and empowering students for informed future decisions.”
Greater Mankato Growth was one of 11 chambers of commerce across the state to receive funding under this program.
About Greater Mankato Growth
Greater Mankato Growth, Inc. (GMG) is comprised of four business units: Greater Mankato Growth, the regional chamber of commerce and economic development organization; Visit Mankato, the local destination management organization; City Center Partnership, a downtown development organization; and GreenSeam, which utilizes agriculture to build on the region’s extensive agribusiness assets to develop the ag economy.
About the Regional Economic Development Alliance
In 2009, the Regional Economic Development Alliance (REDA) began with a progressive group of communities and counties joining together with Greater Mankato Growth in business attraction and development efforts. REDA participants include Eagle Lake, Lake Crystal, Madison Lake, Mankato, North Mankato, Saint Peter, Blue Earth County, and Nicollet County. By working together, the group is able to efficiently provide regional and individual city and county information to businesses interested in the Greater Mankato marketplace. As a result of promoting the individual strengths of each community, along with the combined assets of the regional marketplace, all experience collective success.