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Training options

Training options

Short-term training can give your career a boost.

During the economic recovery, you may want to sharpen your skills, retrain for a new career, or find that new skills are needed to qualify for available jobs. Short-term training can help you qualify for a job, update your skills, or just give you a helpful edge in the job market. Take a look at these options, ranging from free single-session online classes to longer certificate programs at your local college.

Do you qualify for financial help for training or college?

If you're unemployed or have a low income, you might be eligible for a Federal Pell Grant. These grants do not need to be paid back and they are awarded by the U.S. Department of Education to undergraduate students with exceptional financial need. The maximum Pell grant award is $6,495 for 2021-22. Learn more about grants from the U.S. Department of Education’s Student Financial Aid Office.

If you were laid off as part of a mass layoff, you may qualify for training services from the Dislocated Worker program through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). Services vary by state. To find out if you qualify, contact your local American Job Center.

Free and low-cost training

Many websites and community sources offer free or low-cost training. Topics include brushing up on basic skills such as English, math, and basic computer knowledge, as well as software programs, science topics, and foreign language learning.

  • LinkedIn online skills learning offers a collection of free online courses and learning paths to employment for a selection of in-demand occupations. The partnership of LinkedIn Learning, Microsoft Learn, and GitHub Learning Lab also offers discounted certification exams to unemployed job seekers.
  • Code Academyoffers free online coding instruction for a variety of computer programs.
  • Coursera, edX, and Academic Earth offer free online college classes through video lecture, quizzes, and readings.
  • GCF Learn Free emphasizes basic digital and software skills and job search topics.
  • Job Corps is a free training program for youth between 16 and 24 years of age.
  • Khan Academy offers free online learning in school subjects at levels from middle school through college.
  • Language apps provide foreign language instruction in Spanish, Swahili, Japanese, Hindi, Russian, and more. Explore popular apps such as: Duolingo, Babbel, Busuu, or Memrise.
  • LINCS Learner Center from the U.S. Department of Education connects you to free online resources to reach your life goals, including job skills, math and English proficiency, and more.
  • Find a local libraryto ask what training or workshops they offer.
  • Major universities such as Stanford, Harvard, MIT, and Yale offer free online courses to the public. Find listings by searching the name of the institution and "free online classes."
  • The OSHA Outreach Training Program provides workers with basic and more advanced training about common safety and health hazards on the job.
  • School districts and local community organizations often offer free training for the public. Contact those in your area to ask about training.

Certificate programs

Many community or technical college programs can lead to a certificate award in from six months to two years. A certificate can pay off by helping you find a job, get a promotion, or earn more money.

Look for short-term training programs near you at Local Training Finder. Get started with these simple steps:

  • Enter a keyword for the type of job or training you’re looking for.
  • Enter your location to view a list of programs near you.
  • Use the “Program Length” filter on the left-hand side of your results to limit your results by how long it typically takes to complete the program.