NAM Receives Gates Job Grant

National Association of Manufacturers received a $1.5 million grant for educational programs that will provide entry-level skills necessary for advanced manufacturing careers.

WASHINGTON -- The Manufacturing Institute (MI) has been awarded a $1.5 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to plan and implement postsecondary education programs that include the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM)-endorsed Manufacturing Skills Certification System.

The educational programs in community colleges will prepare students with entry-level skills necessary to succeed in advanced manufacturing careers.

The MI initiative aims to make postsecondary education and training more engaging and meaningful, give students the skills necessary to find high-quality jobs in advanced manufacturing, and increase the number of skilled new workers for U.S. manufacturers.

“We need to engage kids in learning, and we need to give them options,” said NAM President John Engler. “Moving these industry-recognized skills certifications into community college programs will provide meaningful, relevant education for students and ultimately produce a highly skilled and mobile workforce -- making us more competitive in the global economy.”

Community colleges in North Carolina (Forsyth Technical Community College), Ohio (Lorain County Community College), Texas (Alamo Colleges) and Washington (Shoreline Community College) will be the first to implement the NAM-endorsed Manufacturing Skills Certification System. 

“Community colleges have taken the lead in adapting their postsecondary education to meet industry needs in their regional economies,” said MI President Emily DeRocco. “Successful integration of industry-driven skills credentials by these progressive community colleges will revolutionize postsecondary education, ensuring graduates have credentials with real value in the workplace.”

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