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Statewide College Internship Initiative Expanding To Get More Workers Into Jobs

Youth apprentices with CareerWise Elkhart County participate in a team-building activity while Jason Harrison of Horizon Education Alliance supervises.

Youth apprentices with CareerWise Elkhart County participate in a team-building activity while Jason Harrison of Horizon Education Alliance supervises. (Justin Hicks/IPB News)

An Indiana program to keep college graduates in the state will expand its focus to a broad range of work-based learning opportunities as it aims to connect everyone from high schoolers to adults to the workforce.

The Indiana Chamber of Commerce launched Indiana INTERNnet two decades ago to stop the so-called “brain drain” of talent from leaving the state. But that wasn’t enough to fill the needs of Indiana companies who say they still can’t find enough workers to fill jobs. 

READ MORE: One Indiana Startup Is Putting A Stopper In The 'Brain Drain'

Jason Bearce, vice president of education and workforce development, said as models like apprenticeships and graduation pathways take off in the state, it became clear they needed to widen their scope, too.

“We really believe that this is a really key workforce development driver and we want to make sure as many people as possible have these opportunities to get connected with employers as early as possible,” he said.

While rolling out more services, Indiana INTERNnet will transition to “Work and Learn Indiana” as soon as the fall.

Contact reporter Justin at jhicks@wvpe.org or follow him on Twitter at @Hicks_JustinM.

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