Print Page | Contact Us | Report Abuse | Sign In | Join
News & Press: MPMA News

MPMA Will Use MJSP Grant For Member Training Program

Friday, July 12, 2019  
Share |

MPMA is partnering with Hennepin Technical College, Imagineering Machine, Cass Precision Machining, and Machining Technology to champion and establish training that allows precision manufacturers to coordinate on-the-job training and apprenticeship opportunities with advanced training – all with the goal of expediting employee skills development.

The effort has been made possible with a $50,000 pre-development grant awarded by the Minnesota Jobs Skills Partnership (MJSP), which works with businesses, educational institutions, and nonprofit organizations to train or retrain workers, expand work opportunities and keep high-quality jobs in the state.

“The idea is to establish training that does not replace technical college education, but better allows precision manufacturers to get prospect or incumbent employees excited about the industry,” said MPMA President Steve Kalina, “The goal is to attract new workers and then expedite skills development – to take traditional training and skills development, and accomplish it in half that time. That way the industry has a better chance of backfilling for the large number of skilled workers heading toward retirement.”

The pre-development grant will allow MPMA and its partners to utilize MJSP resources to help develop a training program and curriculum. “Although some of the money is expected to be used to do some pilot training, it is primarily to help develop the training we plan to implement and when that is done, we would be able to apply for a full MJSP grant in order to carry out the actual training,” explained Kalina.

In the grant application, MPMA pointed out that while most larger companies have the resources and knowledge to pursue training, in-house apprenticeships, tuition support, and other programs to draw and develop talent, most small manufacturers don’t have those resources. The industry has also struggled to promote diversity in its workforce.

“While not opposed to diversity, many small manufacturers don’t know how to pursue it,” according to the application. “Through this pre-development project, HTC, MPMA, and three business partners will determine various skill levels needed and lay out a career progression path for precision manufacturing; identify skills gaps; develop a matrix of training-related resources applicable to precision manufacturers; develop curriculum to address gaps in existing training resources; pilot consultations with the business partners through which they will map out a plan specific to each partner’s needs; and develop outreach and communication tools to connect manufacturers, high schools, community programs and post-secondary colleges and to help attract under-represented groups such as women and minorities.”

Once the program is up and running, Kalina said it is anticipated that 300 workers will receive training through more partnership grants.

MPMA Members Also Earn Grants

The following MPMA members also received MJSP grants in June:
  • Pine Technical & Community College and Westrock: $49,898
  •  Pine Technical & Community College and Broekema Beltway USA: $49,777
  • Alexandria Technical & Community College and Brenton LLC: $49,890
  • Alexandria Technical & Community College and Standard Iron and Wire Works, Inc.: $40,537
  • Alexandria Technical & Community College and Precision Tool Technology: $31,643
  • Anoka Ramsey Community College and Spectralytics, Inc.: $40,145
  • Anoka Ramsey Community College and Aggressive Hydraulics: $49,958
  • Anoka Ramsey Community College and Toy-N-Around/ATventure: $49,729
  • Central Lakes College and Pequot Tool & Manufacturing, Inc.: $40,301
  • Anoka Ramsey Community College and The Specialty Manufacturing Co.: $348,877
  • Minnesota State University, Mankato and Dotson Iron Castings: $290,203
  • Minnesota State University, Mankato and TSI Plastics, Inc.: $49,371