Program boosts skills of manufacturing workforce
Sunday, April 20, 2014
by Lenore Sobota lsobota
PONTIAC – A cooperative effort between the Greater Livingston County Economic Development Council and Heartland Community College is providing a more well-rounded workforce for the area’s manufacturers, say those involved in the project.
The second group participating in the “Fundamentals of Modern Manufacturing” training program graduated earlier this month, bringing to 26 the number who have completed the six-week, 100-hour program since it began last May.
Eleven of the 12 students in the first class were employed within one month of graduation and Adam Dontz, the EDC’s chief executive officer is expecting similar results from the second class.
Finding skilled, qualified employees is a key issue with economic development, Dontz said.
Manufacturing is the largest employment sector in Livingston County, with a dozen manufacturers providing about 2,500 jobs in the county, Dontz said.
“What we’ve done is married the business community with the academic community and, through that partnership, we’ve been successful,” he said.
A handful to students already had jobs when they started the program, but Dontz said the training makes them more valuable to the company and allows them to move up…