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Advanced Manufacturing Centers open at three colleges – expected to boost jobs

October 5, 2012 Areawide, Business No Comments

“The new Manufacturing Technology Centers in Connecticut are going to be a huge boost to all the manufacturers in this state and region,” said QVCC President Ross Tomlin. “Manufacturing is growing in the state and the main roadblock for many of the companies is finding enough qualified workers to replace skilled workers who are retiring,” he said. Image source: nextgenmfg.org

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy this week joined Board of Regents President Robert A. Kennedy at ribbon-cutting ceremonies held at Housatonic Community College (HCC) in Bridgeport, Naugatuck Valley Community College (NVCC) in Waterbury, and Quinebaug Valley Community College (QVCC) in Danielson, to celebrate the opening of new Advanced Manufacturing Centers at each college.

The three new Advanced Manufacturing Centers were established as part of the bipartisan Jobs Bill considered by the legislature and signed by Gov. Malloy last fall (2011).

The bill encouraged new job creation while developing and strengthening the state’s workforce competitiveness.

Included in the bill was $17.8 million in state bond funding for the development of manufacturing programs at the three community colleges.

The colleges will also be responsible for providing measurable outcomes, which include students graduating from the manufacturing program and final job placement in the state’s manufacturing industry.

“The new Manufacturing Technology Centers in Connecticut are going to be a huge boost to all the manufacturers in this state and region,” said QVCC President Ross Tomlin.

“Manufacturing is growing in the state and the main roadblock for many of the companies is finding enough qualified workers to replace skilled workers who are retiring,” he said.

“These programs will infuse a steady stream of graduates this spring (who are) ready to become part of the solution to this problem. They will allow manufacturing to continue to grow and prosper in Connecticut, improve our ability to be competitive in this field (and) at the same time provide excellent jobs to people that need them and want to be a positive part of our economic growth,” Tomlin said.

QVCC’s Manufacturing Technology Center program will run through a partnership with H.H. Ellis Technical High School in Danielson.

Gov. Malloy, at the Oct. 3 ceremonies said, “Turning the corner on decades of economic decline means we have to prepare our students with the high-tech skills that Connecticut companies need to compete globally.”

“We must ensure that our workforce has the strongest possible foundation – that is how Connecticut will regain its competitiveness, create good-paying jobs with good benefits, and strengthen our economy,” Gov.Malloy said.

The colleges recently unveiled a 34-credit Manufacturing Machine Technology certificate program with additional non-credit modules interspersed throughout the year-long program.

The program will prepare students for advanced manufacturing positions that include:

machine operator, Computer Numeric Control (CNC) operator, CNC programmer, assembler and Quality Control inspector.

New equipment will enable students to gain experience operating both manual and CNC equipment.

The program requires a 35-hour-per-week commitment from students and will lead to a basic manufacturing certificate and an advanced manufacturing certificate.

Students will spend approximately half their time in classroom activities and half in the manufacturing lab with hands-on projects.

The model for the new centers and certificate programs is the Manufacturing Technology Center at Asnuntuck Community College in Enfield.

At HCC, the center features a newly-designed manufacturing lab space outfitted with both new and existing equipment.

Input, support and guidance from area manufacturers continues to strengthen the new certificate programs at HCC.

“This ribbon-cutting is indeed a landmark moment for the college and the business community,” said HCC President Anita T. Gliniecki. “The Regional Advanced Manufacturing Center is coming online just as manufacturing activity in the region is picking up. The center will prepare students for well-paying jobs in a growing field while providing area manufacturers with the skilled workers they need to sustain their growth.”

The Advanced Manufacturing Center located in NVCC’s Technology Hall, will continue to feature manufacturing and technical education.

“Naugatuck Valley Community College… will be training students to enter the workforce for the first time, as well as offering training to companies for their (current) workers,” said NVCC President Daisy Cocco De Filippis.

Posted October 5, 2012 based on a press release as edited by HTNP.com Editor Brenda Sullivan

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