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NSCC program receives grant to develop advanced-manufacturing curriculum

Posted by Justin Rice  February 15, 2012 09:47 AM

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Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray announced a grant from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative yesterday to support a North Shore Community College program to train workers for the region's precision machining and manufacturing companies.  

Murray made the announcement yesterday afternoon on NSCC's Lynn campus.

“Massachusetts’ innovation economy continues to grow, including opportunities within the advanced manufacturing industry,” Murray said in a statement.  “With this good news, we need to proactively work with companies across industries to support job creation.  Our Administration commends North Shore Community College for launching an initiative to help close the workforce skills gap by partnering with local companies to improve job training and development within the region’s precision manufacturing industry.”

The $144,855 grant was made through the Technology Collaborative's operating division known as the John Adams Innovation Institute that is dedicated to fostering collaboration among business, government, universities and other economic and civic institutions.

The award will help develop new courses to support a two-year associate’s degree program and a certificate program for precision machining and manufacturing and will also develop alternative credentialing programs that allow students to get college credit for on-the-job training and partnering strategies with large and small precision manufacturing companies that allow these companies to hire new workers and provide them with an integrated classroom and on-the-job training program to enhance workforce skills.

The announcement comes on the heels of Governor Deval Patrick's call in his State of the State address last month to create more jobs through the community college system.  The state recently launched the Advanced Manufacturing Collaborative, a group of business and academic leaders that address sector needs, promote industry innovation and support manufacturing job growth.  

The manufacturing industry employs 260,000 people in Massachusetts, a 4,400 increase in employees from a year ago.

“Enhancing the growth and competitiveness of the precision manufacturing industry is vital to the state’s innovation economy,” Pamela Goldberg, CEO of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, said in a statement. “Our strong partnerships with academia and the private sector will support the development of a highly skilled workforce for the manufacturing sector, leading to long-term economic opportunities and job creation across the Commonwealth.”

The associate’s degree and certificate programs at NSCC were initiated in collaboration with General Electric in Lynn and other manufacturing companies as well as the North Shore Workforce Investment Board to support the needs of manufacturing companies on the North Shore, including the aerospace and defense industries.

Both programs are built around on-the-job training at partnering companies, which will enable employees to receive college credit and provide a core foundation to meet the demands of manufacturing companies across the region. The state's precision manufacturing sector produces parts for the plastics, paper and electronics industries, and includes precision machining, which focuses on the machining of metal products.

 “We are excited and grateful to the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative and the Commonwealth for making this funding available,” NSCC President Wayne M. Burton said in a statement. “Our program with General Electric of Lynn to develop and train manufacturing staff is a great example of how an employer can partner with a community college to design education and training to meet a given need. This is tied directly to the job creation that the Governor spoke of in his State of the State address. This funding will allow NSCC to revise and enhance its advanced manufacturing degree and certificate programs so that it can be applicable and accessible to other companies.”



 


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