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Greensboro College Launches Workforce Initiative to Meet Growing Employer Demand in Aerospace and Manufacturing

October 18, 2022 10:06 am
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Today, The Center for Innovation and Workforce Development at Greensboro College launched the latest in a series of new professional development initiatives. The online program is based on industry input and will help students build the skills sought by global aerospace and manufacturing employers in the Greensboro region. With the tremendous growth of these industries in the Piedmont Triad, demand for skilled workers is at an all-time high. This new certificate and credentialing program will help meet that demand with qualified and ambitious professionals ready to demonstrate their capabilities and expertise.

“As we were reminded when President Biden and Boom Supersonic CEO Blake Scholl visited our state earlier this year, North Carolina is a national leader in aerospace manufacturing,” says Greensboro College president, Lawrence D. Czarda. “Our institution is transforming its offerings to help our region remain at the forefront of this and other industries. By preparing the skilled workers of tomorrow, Greensboro College is building on its essential role in our community to help ensure the continued success of companies throughout our region. We look forward to seeing our students thrive as our local economy continues to grow.”

From the Wright Brothers’ first flight at Kitty Hawk to today’s innovative research and development, North Carolina has enjoyed a long legacy as an aerospace leader. According to PwC, the state ranks fifth in the nation for aerospace manufacturing attractiveness. It is home to top aerospace companies with major operations in North Carolina, including pioneers such as GE Aviation, Honda Aircraft Company, HAECO, Cyril Bath, Raytheon Technologies, and Spirit AeroSystems. In fact, North Carolina is home to more than 200 leading aerospace companies that specialize in airplane assembly and parts manufacturing*. With 13% employment growth from 2015-2019, North Carolina’s aerospace manufacturing sector has grown three times the national average. Here in 2022, North Carolina’s 450,000 manufacturing workers comprise 10% of the state’s entire workforce**.

“There are many factors that aerospace companies consider when making decisions about where to locate their operations,” says Kevin J. Baker, Executive Director of the Piedmont Triad International Airport, which generates an estimated $6 billion in economic impact for the local economy each year. “Every company we speak to identifies the availability of a trained workforce as their top concern. The Piedmont Triad has deep bench strength in the industry, but demand for skilled workers is constantly growing. As such, the new aerospace and manufacturing programs at Greensboro College are an essential element of an evolving workforce pipeline that will prove vital to our region’s ability to compete now and long into the future.”

The importance of this pipeline is clear to local economic development leaders such as NC Works Executive Director Chris Rivera. He states that “When we look at data specific to the number of individuals we have placed into employment in the manufacturing industry, we’re at about 6,500 people per year – and that figure is poised to increase.” With multiple high-tech companies such as Toyota, Boom Supersonic, and Vinfast moving into the area, there are plans for an additional 9,500 manufacturing job openings in the coming months.

The new program launched today at Greensboro College ensures that it will be at the center of preparing local workers to fill those openings and drive economic growth for years to come. The additional workforce development certification programs include technician training in:

Advanced Manufacturing Production

Aerospace Electrical Assembly

Aerospace Quality

Aerospace Structures

Apprentice Tool Making

CNC Lathe Production

CNC Machining Center Production

Composites Manufacturing & Repair

Drafting & CAD

Mechatronics & Industrial Automation

Quality Assurance

Safety

More information about these programs can be found here.

About Greensboro College

For 184 years, Greensboro College has had the opportunity to genuinely know, encourage and prepare our students. In the classroom. In student life. Into their future careers. And throughout their lives. Today, we celebrate all those who give power to small numbers. We celebrate that which makes each student his or her own. It is this rich patchwork of individuality, community and experience that is unmistakably and uniquely Greensboro.

*Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, North Carolina Aerospace Industry – 2016

**Piedmont Triad Partnership’s “National Manufacturing Week” – October 10, 2022

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This post was written by Matthew Johnson