Demand for skilled employees across the manufacturing spectrum, including in the plastics industry, has produced a resurgence of apprenticeship programs. Rowan-Cabarrus Community College recently announced a $200,000 investment from Duke Energy and Piedmont Natural Gas to support the college’s new Multicraft Maintenance Technician Apprenticeship program. The funds will be used to connect students with hands-on training and career development opportunities.
The grant will generously fund all tuition, book and material costs for each apprentice over the next four years; money also has been allocated for the purchase of equipment and related supplies that will be housed in the college’s new Advanced Manufacturing Training Center in Kannapolis, NC. The center is slated to open at the end of 2019.
One of the beneficiaries of this new Multicraft Maintenance Technician Apprenticeship program is Chroma Color Corp. (Salisbury,NC). “This partnership with Rowan-Cabarrus will fill an ever-growing demand for skilled workers at Chroma Color as we continue to grow,” commented Matt Barr, Vice Chairman. “We are excited about this program because Rowan-Cabarrus will host and register the apprenticeship program as well as provide all related classroom instruction and oversee on-the-job training for enrolled apprentices. This kind of training solution reduces the internal staff support we would have needed to provide if we tried to do this on our own.
“From our point of view, the choice to participate in this program was easy to make,” Barr added. “It is also really great to see companies such as Duke Energy and Piedmont Natural Gas invest in our local community.”
Kerry Motley, Apprenticeship Director and Account Manager of Business Services at Rowan-Cabarrus, explained, “We started this program because companies need more multicraft maintenance technicians who have a mastery of all required job duties, but most of our local companies do not have the critical mass to run an apprenticeship program. By the college taking on administrative functions, companies [can] join a collective of manufacturers to ensure that their apprentices get the training they need when they need it.”
Image courtesy auremar/Adobe Stock.