Attorney General Ford Announces Start of Talent Retention Program with Funds from 2019 T-Mobile Settlement

Office of Attorney General


Contact: John Sadler / 702-486-0657
Alcinia Whiters / 702-486-8849


October 21, 2022


Carson City, NV – Today, Attorney General Aaron D. Ford announced the approval of the use of $4 million to create a startup and technology talent retention program through UNR and UNLV that will be overseen by the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED). The project, approved at the Interim Finance Committee meeting on Oct. 20, emphasizes help toward minority, women and first-generation college students.

The money for this project, approved Thursday by the state’s Interim Finance Committee, comes from a 2019 settlement with T-Mobile that included a charitable contribution of $30 million earmarked for enhancing entrepreneurial opportunities for women, minorities, and women and minority-owned businesses.

“The money that our settlement with T-Mobile brought into the state has continued to open new doors for Nevadans and Nevadan businesses,” said AG Ford. “Like the CDFI announced earlier this year – which was similarly supported by these funds – this program will help bolster economic growth in the Silver State. I’d like to thank the Governor’s Office of Economic Development for working with my office on this crucial project.”

“This talent retention program will be different from traditional internship programs,” said Karsten Heise, Governor’s Office of Economic Director Senior Director of Strategic Programs and Innovation. “It will embed the universities within their local ecosystems and leverage key partners in the technology and startup space, such as StartUp Vegas or EDAWN, leading to mutual beneficial collaboration between the universities’ science and engineering colleges and the local technology-based companies and startups.”

The project will begin in the Spring Semester of 2023 and will make use of internship infrastructure already in place at the Nevada Career Studio at UNR. At UNLV, a new program will be created with support from StartUp Vegas, an entrepreneurial support organization.

The Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development found that through its work with the startup and entrepreneurial communities in Nevada that there is a shortage of talent, particularly in the technology sector, that can create difficulties for companies in their early stages. Through this program, small technology-based businesses or startups will be able to recruit from a previously underutilized talent pool and incentivize students graduating in Nevada to stay in the Silver State due to new opportunities.



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