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Workforce Development VP among panelists on skills-gap broadcast

Shannon M. Munro on WVIAPenn College’s vice president for workforce development was among the guests on this week’s “Keystone Edition – Business,” a public affairs program broadcast by the region’s public television affiliate. Shannon M. Munro joined Annette Weiss, assistant dean of nursing and chief nurse administrator at Misericordia University, and Sara Maaske, senior director of product at Penn Foster, on a WVIA-TV panel moderated by host Kris Jones. With Baby Boomers retiring from the skilled trades and a shortage of younger workers to take their places, the panelists brainstormed strategies for addressing the issue. “We go about solving the skills-gap problem at Penn College from multiple directions,” Munro said. “Graduating students that have the skills that are needed in the workforce when they complete, but also helping companies who are continuously needing to train their current workforce because the climate is constantly changing.” She also provided an overview of the college’s far-reaching apprenticeship program, funded by an $8 million U.S. Department of Labor grant and benefiting such companies as First Quality and West Pharmaceutical Services. A replay of the series’ “Trading Up” episode is available through WVIA OnDemand and through WVIA’s Facebook page.

Faculty & Staff Skills Gap Workforce Development

Penn College ‘manufactures’ educational experience for teachers

With support from the National Science Foundation, Pennsylvania College of Technology recently “manufactured” a weeklong educational experience for 13 high school teachers and school counselors from throughout the state.

The Manufacturing Externship Camp revealed to educators the promising realities of manufacturing careers through several activities, including a robot-building exercise that they can replicate at their home schools. The camp is one of several Penn College initiatives – funded by a grant from the NSF’s Advanced Technological Education program – dedicated to growing the manufacturing workforce.

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Penn College offering new manufacturing certificate

Pennsylvania College of Technology is providing a new pathway for aspiring skilled machinists and computer numerical control operators. The college is accepting applications for its CNC machinist certificate, offered for the first time this fall.

“Industry needs skilled machinists and CNC operators. This program can be completed in nine months, so students can quickly obtain the skills required by industry and get right to work,” said Bradley M. Webb, dean of industrial, computing and engineering technologies.

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Penn College manufacturing students to study in Germany    

The National Science Foundation reaffirmed its confidence in Pennsylvania College of Technology’s efforts to combat the manufacturing skills gap by providing a supplemental grant to facilitate study abroad in Germany.

The grant will cover the cost of sending 10 Penn College manufacturing students and two faculty to Germany next summer to receive training at the Eckert International Vocational School and various companies on the cutting edge of computer numerical control and automation technology.

The 16-day trip will include hands-on experiences with tools used in the product development process; software operating milling, turning and multitasking machines; and robotic systems employed in the manufacturing industry.

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Penn College receives NSF grant to combat skills gap

Unfilled manufacturing jobs through 2028 may total 2.4 million, threatening the health of the industry and the U.S. economy. With help from the National Science Foundation, Pennsylvania College of Technology is addressing that dire skills gap estimated by Deloitte and The Manufacturing Institute.

The NSF recently awarded the college a $591,924 grant through its Advanced Technological Education program to increase the number of qualified workers in advanced manufacturing. The money will fund several initiatives during the next three years aimed at students, teachers and school counselors.

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