HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – Holyoke Community College (HCC) will receive $50,000 for the development and implementation of a new Manufacturing Training Program. 

State Rep. Patricia Duffy from Holyoke said the funding has been included in the House Fiscal Year 2022 budget.  “Holyoke employers need a trained workforce and Holyoke constituents need career-track jobs,” said Duffy. “I’m thrilled to see these local assets of our population and our historical manufacturing base come together and build on each other.”

The program will serve up to 45 individuals in three cohorts by providing approximately 150 hours of remote and in-person, hands-on training combined with workplace experiential learning. The three-phase program includes: skills assessments, and pre-training focused on workplace readiness in English and basic math, followed by core training in entry-level manufacturing.

HCC President Christina Royal lauded Rep. Duffy’s efforts, citing the need for trained workers in the manufacturing sector. “Manufacturing is an important employment sector in Holyoke and one with deep historical roots. Despite the city’s high unemployment rate, a significant number of manufacturing jobs in Holyoke remain vacant. The purpose of this new program is to increase the number of Holyoke residents working in manufacturing, especially those impacted by poverty, unemployment, and limited educational opportunities,” said President Royal.

The manufacturing component will include modules in communication, teamwork, customer service, digital literacy, general manufacturing processes and principles; blueprints, dimensions, tolerances, instrumentation and measuring; manufacturing workplace math; lean manufacturing, problem-solving, quality control; and workplace safety.

The college is planning to invite regional manufacturing businesses to partner with the program to help in creating a targeted curriculum and offer job placement opportunities for graduates.