Department of Higher Education and Workforce Development
September 11, 2020Fast Track application now open for 2020-21, new schools added to eligibility list
The 2020-21 application for the Fast Track Workforce Incentive Grant is open, with more eligible institutions, and 15 new eligible program areas. Grant recipients can now spend their funds at Missouri’s non-profit private, as well as public, colleges and universities.
Fast Track, a state financial aid program, provides tuition assistance to adults over 25 years of age, or individuals under 25 who have not been enrolled in education in at least two years. Grant recipients receive financial assistance to work toward a certificate, degree, or industry-recognized credential that fills a high-need skills gap.
The Fast Track program was launched in August 2019 at public colleges and universities, with awards first distributed in January 2020. Appropriations made by the General Assembly this year expands the eligibility to students enrolled at private non-profit colleges and universities. Missouri’s Coordinating Board for Higher Education (CBHE) voted to expand the number of eligible programs for 2020-21 during its March 4 meeting.
“Expanding Fast Track to include private institutions and a greater number of high-demand program areas will create more opportunities for adult learners,” said Zora Mulligan, commissioner of higher education. “We’re committed to providing education to Missourians of all ages as we work to close the skills gap and contribute to Missouri’s economic growth.”
In the program’s first year, the average award amount was $2,189. Allied health, education, and computer science were the most popular program areas among grant recipients.
Fast Track will help meet Missouri’s Big Goal of 60 percent of working-age adults having a high-quality certificate or degree by 2025. The state is currently at 53.7 percent.
Learn more about Fast Track at https://dhewd.mo.gov/initiatives/fast_track.php.
About the Missouri Department of Higher Education & Workforce Development: The department works to empower Missourians with the skills and education needed for success. More information about MDHEWD can be found at https://dhewd.mo.gov or on Facebook and Twitter @MoDHEWD.