Maryland was awarded $4.2 million yesterday to help train students for work, the first installment of a $25.2 million federal grant over five years.
The money, from the Labor Department under the School-to-Work Opportunities Act of 1994, will go toward a program called "Career Connections," which is designed to make career awareness and training available to every high school student, particularly in jobs requiring knowledge of technology.
Part of the grant will be spent on job awareness programs for elementary and secondary school students. Some high school students will hold part-time jobs while they take college courses.
Still other portions of the grant will expose students to career opportunities in aviation and aerospace before they enter college.
The grant was awarded to the state Department of Education, but other state agencies, as well as employers, labor leaders, parents and educators, are involved in the effort. Both Gov. Parris N. Glendening and state school Superintendent Nancy S. Grasmick praised the grant, the governor calling it a "welcome sign" at a time of dwindling federal resources.
Maryland is one of 27 states awarded $161 million yesterday under the school-to-work program signed into law 16 months ago. The federal labor and education departments administer the act.