KVCC Groves Campus' CNC machinist program addresses skills shortage

When Kalamazoo Valley Community College (www.kvcc.edu/academy) in Western Michigan heard about the lack of skilled trades people, primarily CNC machinists, they opened a Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Operator Academy at The Groves Campus in 2010. This is the third such Academy for the school, which also operates a Production Technician Academy and a Mechatronic Systems Technician Academy.
The CNC Operator Academy was created with the assistance of the Advanced Manufacturing Career Consortium, a Southwestern Michigan group consisting of 29 participating companies working together to increase the number of people interested and qualified for job openings in the area.

The seven-week CNC Operator Academy program is a competency-based, project-driven, career training program. Dave Martin, president and CEO of Accu-Mold LLC and a member of the Advanced Manufacturing Career Consortium, noted that the skills shortage, particularly in CNC machining, comes as a result of what he says is the “lost decade of manufacturing and the economy suddenly turning around,” leaving mold companies with a lot of work and a lack of skilled employees....

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