TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV)– Ivy Tech Community College recently received $4.7 million in funding from Apprenticeship Build America, and Rod Dowell said that money will help expand programs in Terre Haute.

“It’s going to help Ivy Tech build this hub for apprenticeships, that’ll give us resources in Terre Haute to expand our apprenticeship opportunities for companies and industries, which will have a ton of benefits because it’s not only a good recruiting tool for companies, but it helps train [students,]” he said.

Ivy Tech has partnered with Toyota of Terre Haute on an existing program for students who want to be technicians. Fixed operations manager Fred Mackey said the partnership helps both students and employers.

“Very important for us as a dealership and as a facility that needs constant employees,” Mackey said. “We have a ‘earn while you learn’ program and a partnership with Ivy Tech for us to bring in young men and women that are in the automotive field or program and give them an opportunity to get some real world experience.”

Dowell, the executive director of career coaching and employer relations, said he hopes to expand into new industries, and work with different employers in the coming years.

“You typically think of an apprenticeship like in electrical [jobs] or building trades, those are still very important and we will focus on those as well, but this is going to go outside of this box and look into other areas that maybe companies aren’t taking advantage of now,” he said.

He said an example of one of these fields could be installing electric vehicle chargers. He also said some of the funding will help expand other existing programs.

“We can offer things like ‘achieve your degree’, we can help employees within a business or an industry to get their tuition paid for,” he said.

Dowell hopes the expansion can help businesses throughout the region.

“They can take these skills they’ve learned and go right to a employer, hopefully right here in the Wabash Valley,” he said. “Because we want to keep them right here.”