Fast Track Workforce Incentive Grant
On February 16, Senators gave first round approval to Senate Bill 672. Senate Bill 672 would expand and extend the Missouri’s innovative Fast Track program.
The Fast Track Workforce Incentive Grant is a financial aid program for adults. The grant addresses workforce needs by helping adults pursue a certificate, degree, or industry-recognized credential in an area designated as high need. Grant recipients must maintain Missouri residency and work in Missouri for three years after graduation to prevent the grant from becoming a loan that must be repaid with interest.
There are three eligibility requirements for the Fast Track program:
- First, individuals must be 25 years or older, or must have not been enrolled in any school within the last two years.
- Next, the grant will serve students who have not earned a bachelor's degree and are planning to enroll part time or full time.
- And finally, individuals must make no more than $80,000 filing jointly, or no more than $40,000 per year, filing under any other tax status.
Legislation is urgently needed in 2022 as Fast Track is set to expire this year. A Republican Senator out of Springfield, is sponsoring Senate Bill 672 to keep Fast Track going, and expand access by allowing the program to be used for apprenticeships as well.
The strong push for workforce legislation this year comes as more than half of business leaders say talent is the top issue impacting their profitability, according to a recent Missouri Chamber poll.