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Manufacturers coalition gets OK for apprenticeship program

YOUNGSTOWN — The Mahoning Valley Manufacturers Coalition has gotten approval for its machinist apprenticeship program for inclusion in TechCred, the state’s workforce development and training initiative.

Funding approval means participating manufacturers can apply for TechCred help to reimburse apprentice-related and other training costs.

TechCred, launched in October 2019, provides up to $2,000 in reimbursement for training costs per approved credential, per apprentice. Companies are eligible to claim up to $30,000 per year in reimbursement costs if their application is successful.

“This is a great opportunity for employers thinking of hiring or upskilling machinists in their workforce. These sector-customized training programs absorb some of the costs employers would experience otherwise, and it gives employees the skills to earn industry-recognized credentials,” Jessica Borza, executive director of the coalition, said.

The goal of the program is to help fill the void of in-demand skills by helping pay for workers to develop new and better skills. Employers benefit by having an upskilled workforce that can adapt to and perform in increasingly technical fields.

The coalition’s machining program is one of several occupational models it sponsors. Others include industrial maintenance mechanic and welder / fitter. These models take the burden of tracking apprentice hours and finding training partners off employers by shifting these administrative tasks to the manufacturers coalition.

Applications for this round of TechCred funding are due Jan. 4 to 31 for training in 2021. For information on the machinist program or other apprenticeship models by the coalition, email Vicki Thompson at vthompson@tpma-inc.com.

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