Congratulations on your decision to pursue a credential and/or licensure. Sometimes the cost of programs that prepare you for high-demand careers can create a financial barrier. FastForward (also referred to as the Workforce Credential Grant) covers the cost of select pre-approved high-demand training programs by covering two-thirds of the cost of the tuition under the condition that the student will successfully complete the class and obtain the related workforce credential. The applicant is financially responsible for the first third. If the applicant is financially unable to pay the first third as determined by a predefined set of criteria, they may qualify for Workforce Financial Assistance (FANTIC).

What is FastForward (WCG)?

FastForward, also known as the Workforce Credential Grant (WCG) is a program funded by the Virginia General Assembly to encourage the attainment of high-demand Workforce Credentials by underwriting the cost of approved Credential Preparation Programs. Students are required to pay 1/3 of the cost of the program with the explicit expectation they must successfully complete the class and seek the related credential identified for their program of choice. Failure to complete the class will result in the student’s financial obligation to pay an additional 1/3 of the cost of the program back to the Commonwealth of Virginia.

FastForward FANTIC (Financial Assistance) provides funding for students demonstrating financial need who desire to enroll in an approved workforce training program leading to the attainment of an industry-recognized credential or licensure and are not eligible for other funding grants or financial assistance. This financial aid will pay 100% of the student’s portion for the program; however, per FastForward Guidelines, failure to complete the class will still require the applicant to repay one-third of the cost of the class.

What is expected?

Those participating in this program will be expected to regularly attend and participate in all classes and are required to successfully complete the class. Additionally, the student is expected to obtain the related credential or licensure at the end of the program, regardless of whether that credential is embedded in the cost of the class or requires an additional fee for a credential assessment at a third-party site. The cost of embedded credential assessments will be covered by the Workforce Credential Grant, but the cost of a third-party/off-site assessment (not included in the cost of the class) will be the applicant’s financial responsibility.

If you qualify for the WCG Workforce Financial Assistance (FANTIC), it will pay 100% of the student portion (1/3 of the cost); however, failure to complete the class will result in the financial obligation to repay 1/3 of the cost of the program by the applicant.

What are the qualifications?

To participate in the program, the applicant shall: (eligibility documents listed with each)

  1. Be a US citizen or eligible noncitizen
    • For verification, bring a photo ID such as a driver’s license or a state-issued ID card.
  1. Be eighteen years of age if applicant has completed secondary school or nineteen years old otherwise
    • For verification, bring one of the following: Driver’s License; State Issued ID, or Passport.
  1. Meet the Virginia Domicile requirement
    • PRIMARY DOCUMENTATION: Complete the VCCS Domicile Determination Form and meet the qualification to be domiciled in Virginia. The form is attached to the application. Complete the form and submit with the application. If applicant does not meet the domicile requirement but has extenuating circumstances, they may appeal to the Laurel Ridge College Domicile Expert.
    • SECONDARY VERIFICATION: Copy of Preprinted documentation showing current applicant address. ACCEPTED EXAMPLES include Utility Bill, Bank Statement, Voter Registration Card, Preprinted Rent Receipt, Housing Contract, State Vehicle Registration, etc.
  1. Be in compliance with federal Selective Service registration requirements
  2. Not be enrolled in an associate or bachelor’s degree program, unless the Workforce program provides training related to the degree program and is necessary to meet a job requirement or advance employment success
  3. Enroll in a pre-approved Laurel Ridge Workforce Solutions FastForward credential program
  4. Be ineligible for other forms of tuition funding including employer assistance plans or other tuition assistance programs from WIOA, SNAPET, TANF, DRS, or any other state or federal programs
    • May be asked to provide documentation of denial for other assistance programs.
  1. Demonstrate financial need based on household income by:
    • Providing proof that either the student or dependent student’s parent(s) is currently eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and/or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF); or
      • For verification, bring in either a current/active SNAP or TANF card.
    • Demonstrating that the student or the dependent student’s parent(s) has a household adjusted gross income that is less than 400% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines depending on the student’s physical home address. This qualification will be determined by the Workforce Solutions staff based on a Tax Transcript* provided by applicant.
guidelines chart
  • For verification, you must bring in your IRS Tax Transcript
    • Applicant must apply to the IRS to get a Tax Return Transcript that must accompany the application if they are solely using income to determine their financial eligibility. This process can take up to 10 business days so plan accordingly. Go to IRS website:
    • If the transcript mailing time will delay the registration/application process past the starting date of the class, we can temporarily accept a copy of your most recent tax return to begin the process so long as we receive the Tax Transcript (that will verify the tax transcript requested) no more than three business days after the class start date, otherwise you will be withdrawn from the class.

How do I apply?

Please complete the WCG Workforce Financial Assistance Application/Checklist and bring in the required documentation as outlined above and on the application. You can stop by Middletown or Fauquier Office during business hours to submit your application and paperwork. While you can also submit electronically, some documents require signatures before the process can move forward.  If you are submitting electronic copies, you can email them to [email protected]. Please be sure all documents have names on them.

Applications will be reviewed by the Workforce Solutions staff to determine qualifications. You may be required to apply for other funding sources based on your application responses/documentation prior to being evaluated to receive the Workforce Financial Assistance.

Workforce Solutions Class Cancellation Policy

In the event an applicant wishes to cancel a class they must adhere to the Workforce Solutions Cancellation policy which requires a minimum of three business days’ notice prior to the start of the class to receive a refund.

In the event Workforce Solutions has to cancel a class due to insufficient enrollment or other extenuating circumstances, the applicant will be given the option of moving to another section of the same class or receiving a refund and any financial assistance award refund will revert to Laurel Ridge Workforce Solutions.

Our Primary Communication Method with Student

Our primary method to provide important information to you will be via the email address you provide to us. You are welcome to call at any time and we will also contact you via the phone number you provide, as necessary. It’s your responsibility once you submit an application to monitor all emails (and your voicemail) from us. If either changes, it is your responsibility to contact us to update.

Contact Information and Questions

Christina Huffman
[email protected] | (540) 869-0666

Questions and completed application and required documentation can be emailed to [email protected].

FastForward Credential Programs

Learn more about how FastFoward Credential Programs are changing the lives of Virginians.

WSCE Classes Enrolling Now Laurel Ridge Workforce Solutions