Alaska Sea Grant: Graying of the Fleet Research Wins National Award

A woman sets her net in Egegik, Alaska. Photo by Amy Brown/Alaska Marine Conservation Council

Alaska Sea Grant-supported researchers won a national award at Sea Grant Week in Portland, Ore., this month for a study on how to boost access to Alaska commercial fisheries by young and rural residents.

The Sea Grant Association, comprised of Sea Grant program directors from 33 coastal universities, presented its Research to Application award to ASG director Heather Brandon who accepted it on behalf of the investigators for the project entitled, Graying of the Fleet in Alaska’s Fisheries: Defining the Problem and Assessing the Alternatives.

Source: Alaska Sea Grant: Graying of the Fleet research wins national award – Sea Grant Alaska

U.S. Department of Labor Awards Alaska $3.35M to Prepare Alaskans for Work in High-Growth Industries

JUNEAU, Alaska — The U.S. Department of Labor awarded $3.35 million dollars to the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development in Trade and Economic Transition Dislocated Worker Grants. This two-year funding will expand the capacity of dislocated worker training and employment programs that prepare Alaskans for occupations in the state’s fastest growing sectors: health care, construction, and maritime industries.

“It is critical that we invest in Alaskans who seek training to be first in line for these high-paying jobs on major projects, such as the Alaska LNG Gasline,” said Alaska Governor Bill Walker. “This funding will assist as we grow our own skilled workforce to fill essential occupations; from welders and pipefitters, operating engineers, to truck drivers, laborers, electricians and mechanics.”

Dislocated Worker Grants support state, tribal, and non-profit entities that implement innovative skills training and career services for people seeking reemployment as the economy and corresponding workforce needs change. Alaska’s aging workforce will increase demand for qualified workers across all sectors, in addition to the growing number of jobs in health care, construction, and maritime industries. This funding will boost existing training and support services provided by the Department of Labor and Workforce Development’s Job Center Network.

“This funding supports our steadfast commitment to Alaska Hire and a robust, skilled workforce,” said Labor Commissioner Heidi Drygas. “It is critical that Alaskans who need to transition careers are ready to go to work in these high demand occupations, and the Department is eager to assist in that process.”

Grant funds will be available through the job centers for dislocated workers and will come in diverse forms, including:

  • Enhanced career services, support services and work-based learning opportunities
  • Training programs that lead to industry recognized credentials and employment
  • Quality pre-apprenticeship opportunities in health care and construction industry occupations
  • Support for those newly entering Registered Apprenticeships
  • Direct employment referral

For more information: Shawna Harper, Assistant Director of Workforce Development, Division of Employment and Training Services: 907-465-1882, Shawna.Harper@alaska.gov.

Source: State of Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development

Research Vessel Sikuliaq Expands Ways to Study Gulf of Alaska Ecosystems

Sikuliaq pulls into Seward before departing for the Northern Gulf of Alaska Long-term Ecological Research cruise in May. Photo by Sarah Spanos

Editor’s note: New funding and the use of the research vessel Sikuliaq have revolutionized data collection in the Gulf of Alaska by increasing the space and workforce available to conduct complex experiments at sea.

With 20 years of research and data to support their efforts, scientists in the Northern Gulf of Alaska Long-term Ecological Research program strive to better understand how physical processes and climate variability influence the base of the food web in the productive northern Gulf of Alaska. Led by researchers from the University of Alaska Fairbanks College of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences and their collaborators, the first LTER research expedition on Sikuliaq concluded in May 2018.

This is the first story in a four-part series documenting successes and preliminary findings from that expedition.

The Gulf of Alaska supports a diverse ecosystem that includes several commercially important fisheries, as well as culturally and economically important marine mammals and birds. All of these species are fueled by tiny organisms at the base of the food chain. Observations indicate that changes in these communities of tiny organisms are linked to climate variability, but these links are poorly understood. Researchers want to better understand these links so they can evaluate how the gulf’s fisheries and marine mammals may be impacted by changes in the environment.

Read the full article here.

Source: Research vessel Sikuliaq expands ways to study Gulf of Alaska ecosystems – News Miner

Perkins V Implementation | ACTE

Questions about the new Perkins law? View ACTE’s recorded webinar on the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act , including changes from prior legislation, definitions of key terms, accountability indicators, state and local planning, and more.

Source: Perkins V Implementation | ACTE

Legislative Alert: New Perkins Law Enacted

On August 1, the President signed the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V) into law. This officially  reauthorizes the 2006 Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act

This new law becomes effective on July 1, 2019. The first year of implementation will be considered a “transition year” and states will be able to submit a transition plan to cover requirements for the July 2019-June 2020 program year. State four-year plans will likely be due in the spring of 2020 and will cover program years from July 2020-June 2024. Over the coming months the U.S. Department of Education should release guidance with more details on requirements for transition plans and full four-year plans, and states in turn will begin to provide more guidance to local recipients.

A summary and analysis of the bill, which highlights the major changes from Perkins IV to Perkins V, can be found here.

Source: ACTE Public Policy Department