LSU Continuing Education Professional Development Program is Building a Pipeline for a Trained Louisiana Workforce


ContinuingEd1BATON ROUGESince 2001, the Professional Development program of LSU Continuing Education, has partnered with the Louisiana Workforce Commission to be the primary training provider for more than $20 million worth of training grants awarded to Louisiana businesses.

“More than 14,000 people have received training through grants awarded to LSU Continuing Education under the state’s Incumbent Worker Training program, or IWTP, giving Louisiana a stronger workforce that has more value for our state’s employers,” said Kevin Joyce, director of the IWTP for the Louisiana Workforce Commission.

The Incumbent Worker Training program is a partnership between the Louisiana Workforce Commission, or LWC; ContinuingEd2business and industry; and training providers. IWTP is designed to benefit business and industry by assisting with existing employees' skill development and by increasing employee productivity and company growth. The outcomes of the program are the creation of new jobs, the retention of jobs that may otherwise have been eliminated, and an increase in wages for the trained workers.

Fifteen training grants have been approved between July 2015 and June 2016, setting a record for the highest number of grants approved in a fiscal year since LSU started participating in the program in 2001. The companies receiving the grants represented a broad range of industries including construction, hospitality, retail and automotive.

“In a year when state budgets are struggling, Continuing Education’s Professional Development program continues to do what it does best—develop and deliver the kind of workforce training sought out by industry,” said Joe Greenburg, associate executive director at LSU Continuing Education.

The Professional Development program provides access to high quality educational opportunities to help businesses meet learning needs that relate to workplace and career development. Staff members also help Louisiana employers set up workable training plans and write grant proposals in order to meet goals set by the Louisiana Workforce Commission.

“Classes from LSU Continuing Education give Turner an extra advantage that contributes to us maintaining existing contracts and growing with new clients,” said Ray Neck, training manager for Turner Industries Group, LLC. “Their assistance in the grant writing process and superior class offerings are essential to the development of our personnel and work processes.”

LSU Continuing Education’s Professional Development program provides courses on a variety of topics including business and management, computer and information technology, and safety management. Courses are offered at LSU, on-site at an employer’s location or online.

“By conducting more than 125 courses each semester, we are in daily contact with employees, training directors, human resource directors, owners and managers – they tell us what they need, and we find the right people to develop and teach the courses,” said Lisa Verma, director of custom and onsite programs.

In recent years, Professional Development has focused on more corporate relationships, especially custom and on-site training.

“The new focus on custom and on-site programs has really driven the grant business and broadened our reach,” said Verma.

For more information about Professional Development and other programs offered by LSU Continuing Education, visit

About LSU’s Professional Development Program

Professional Development is a program of LSU Continuing Education, a leading university provider of educational outreach and engagement for learners in all phases of life, from kindergarten to retirement. Its mission is to help people achieve their goals and improve their quality of life, their organizations and their communities. Visit for more information.


Contact Jennifer Knight
LSU Media Relations