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MassMEP Prepares 22 for Careers in Manufacturing

As part of Manufacturing Month, the Massachusetts Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MassMEP) graduated two classes of Manufacturing Advancement Center Workforce Innovative Collaborative (MACWIC) certified students from MassMEP's Accelerated CNC Skills Training program at WPI and UMass Lowell. Funding for the classes was provided by an OEA grant through MassDevelopment and a U.S. Department of Labor Employment & Training Administration grant through the Massachusetts More Skilled Workers Program.

At the graduation ceremony, MassMEP announced that it will provide a $2.5 million in-kind grant of software and educational materials to dozens of Massachusetts vocational high schools to allow students to gain skills on advanced, high-tech machinery. The software is used to compliment the existing curriculum at the schools and provides students with additional hands-on training through simulation programs.

Representatives John Fernandes and Jeffrey Roy attended the graduation and presented the graduates with House citations. They were joined by Katie Stebbins, Assistant Secretary of Tech, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development.


MassMEP Advanced CNC Program
To date, there have been more than 450 graduates of the Advanced CNC Skills Training program with a better than 90 percent placement rate upon graduation. The 280-hour program consists of:

  • Level 1 – Shop Math, Blueprint Reading, Metrology and Quality Inspection, Work Readiness, Safety.

  • Level 2 – Lean Manufacturing, CNC Mill Concepts and Hands-on, CNC Lathe Concepts and Hands-on, Intro to Programing and Geometric Dimensions & Tolerance.

  • Level 3 – Advanced CNC Skills including set-up, fixturing, tool selection, quality inspection, CAD/CAM training, and OSHA Safety. Included in Level 3 is additional work in resume writing, interviewing skills, value stream mapping, SPC and finance for the shop floor.

A "speed dating" type of job fair is conducted with local manufacturers before the conclusion of each class. Upon graduation and passing of the MACWICompetency-based validation tests, participants receive a MACWIC Level 3 certificate.

"When I hire a MACWIC certified employee, I have a greater level of confidence in their potential, because they've already proven they have the basic technical skills necessary to succeed," stated Diane Ferrera, Director of Human Resources, AccuRounds.

Curriculum Grant
MassMEP and WPI have committed $2.5M in software and computer support. Every Massachusetts vocational high school that partners with the MACWIC will receive unlimited access to valuable online learning tools, including Learn CNC and MACWIC's Curriculum in a Box. The vocational schools that participated in the first round of support experienced tremendous success with the inclusion of the access to the software. The schools saw an increase of almost 25% of their 10th and 11th graders achieving MACWIC Level 1 certification.

"MassMEP is pleased to offer this opportunity to the vocational high school students to further their opportunities for a career in manufacturing and to help meet the training needs of area employers," stated John Killam, President of MassMEP.

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