Wolf Administration Announces New Advanced Manufacturing Training Opportunities for Workers in Southwestern Pennsylvania
Harrisburg, PA – Today, Governor Tom Wolf announced the approval of a new $1 million grant to United Mine Workers of America Career Centers, Inc. (UMWACC) to support additional training opportunities at its training center currently undergoing extensive renovations and upgrades in Prosperity, Greene County. The training center will help train and build a competitive workforce in advanced manufacturing for coal-impacted communities in southwest Pennsylvania.
“Workers and their families in southwest Pennsylvania have seen their share of challenges, with many former coal workers seeking new jobs in manufacturing, but lacking the necessary job skills to do so,” Governor Wolf said. “UMWACC’s renovated training center is providing opportunities for those workers, and this new grant enables UMWACC to expand that training even further into the in-demand field of mechatronics.”
The grant will provide $1 million to UMWACC for the purchase of mechatronics training equipment for its new training center currently under renovation. When completed, the training center will focus on providing workforce development and re-employment opportunities for dislocated workers to get them the skills they need to land reliable, family-sustaining careers in advanced manufacturing and mechatronics. UMWACC is partnering with the Community College of Allegheny County to offer a 400-hour advanced manufacturing/mechatronics certificate program, and expects 40-60 students enrolling in the program in the first two years of the program.
The grant was provided through Governor Wolf’s Manufacturing PA initiative launched in 2017 and administered through the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED). Additionally, in January 2018, Governor Wolf announced a $3 million grant through the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP) to UMWACC to assist with construction costs for the facility renovation.
“The $1 million grant from DCED represents a key component in facilitating our training programs here in Ruff Creek,” said Clemmy Allen, executive director of UMWACC. “The training equipment, primarily for our mechatronics training program, will help prepare residents of rural coal mining communities for employment in advanced manufacturing. Governor Wolf has previously provided a RACP grant to repurpose our training facility and this DCED grant will provide hands-on training equipment to help us train workers for jobs with a future.”
This grant to UMWACC builds on the governor’s other Manufacturing PA grants to promote manufacturing training programs in Pennsylvania, including grants to the Community College of Allegheny County, Greater Reading Chamber Alliance, Johnstown Area Regional Industries, Reading Area Community College, Workforce Solutions of North Central Pennsylvania, the Precision Manufacturing Institute, the Manufacturers Research Center, the Greater Johnstown Career & Technical Center, and Robert Morris University.
Governor Wolf’s Manufacturing PA initiative ensures that training leads not simply to any job, but to careers that provide higher pay and opportunities for advancement. Working with DCED’s strategic partners, including Industrial Resource Centers (IRCs), Pennsylvania’s colleges, universities, technical schools, and non-profit organizations, this initiative fosters collaboration and partnerships to accelerate technology advancement, encourage innovation and commercialization, and build a 21st century workforce.
J.J. Abbott, Governor’s Office, 717.783.1116
Michael Gerber, DCED, 717.783.1132