Moraine Valley Community College is collaborating with the Calumet Area Industrial Commission to provide training in advanced manufacturing as part of the One Workforce Grant, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Labor.

The Calumet Area Industrial Commission and the Chicago Federation of Labor Workforce and Community Initiative is partnering with several area employers, workforce boards, community-based organizations and community colleges, including Moraine Valley, to provide training and employment opportunities in the region’s manufacturing industry through this $8.9 million grant, which will run through 2024.

Individuals interested in pursuing one of Moraine Valley’s 17 certificate and three associate degree programs that qualify for funding under this grant can have their tuition, books and supplies paid for in fields such as welding, electronics, engineering, industrial mechanics and automation.

“This grant provides a great opportunity for students to get help funding their education and prepare for employment in a growing industry,” said Steve Pappageorge, executive director of Moraine Valley’s Corporate, Community and Continuing Education subdivision. “Manufacturing today is not what it was years ago. It’s full of new technologies and new methods in exciting careers.”
Pappageorge explained that in addition to direct training, students will have the chance to build relationships with prospective employers in Northeast Illinois and Lake County, Indiana, as part of the partnership aspect of the grant.

“The U.S. Department of Labor, along with the educational and industrial organizations and workforce boards associated with this grant, all believe there are significant opportunities for people interested in starting a manufacturing career or who are already in the field and need to be reskilled. The Chicagoland area is vibrant with manufacturing, and there are immediate hiring needs. Someone who is willing to put the time and effort in to learn these skills will reap the benefits of a nice career path,” Pappageorge said.

To qualify, individuals must be 17 years of age or older, out of high school and unemployed or underemployed. Women, minorities and individuals from disadvantaged communities are encouraged to apply. Contact Moraine Valley’s Admissions Office at (708) 974-5355 or to learn about the application process.

Pappageorge indicated that a portion of grant funds will be used for current workers who need additional skills, so employers who would like to learn how to upskill their workforce can contact him at (708) 974-5407 or for information.