The Missouri Department of Economic Development approved two organizations for a total of $1.1 million in grants and tax credits under the Workforce Training Initiative round one. The Workforce Training Initiative helps provide quality job training opportunities through non-profit organizations, local governments, community colleges, public technical colleges, and public universities. These programs will increase access to training to underserved areas and benefit 860 persons of low and moderate income. The initiative defines job training as a method of skill development derived from the practical application of work-related skills. This training prepares individuals for a specific job opportunity, particularly those within occupations that are experiencing growth. The Department of Economic Development worked closely with the Department of Higher Education and Workforce Development to select organizations to receive funding. The funds may be directed towards capital improvements, equipment, program supplies, and training materials. These projects will increase the number of students trained and improve the readiness of the students to enter their respective fieldsFunds from this program will be utilized by Three Rivers College to equip a simulation lab located at the Ozark Foothills Business Incubator in the Poplar Bluff Industrial Park. The lab will be an expansion of Three Rivers College’s current Missouri One Start Customized Training Program and will house contracted instruction in advanced manufacturing training..