San Bernardino County – Local manufacturers in need of talent are increasingly relying on San Bernardino County-based Industrial Technical Learning Center (InTech), which connects employers with a pool of applicants trained in manufacturing. In its first year of operation InTech graduated more than 1,000 students, providing hands-on training along with awarding state-and nationally-recognized certifications that lead to a good job.
InTech Center is exploring how work-based learning opportunities can further address the skills-gap challenge in manufacturing. In its 2015 report, The Skills Gap in Manufacturing, Deloitte and The Manufacturing Institute reported that over the next decade, nearly three and a half million manufacturing jobs likely need to be filled, and the skills gap is expected to result in two million of those jobs going unfilled. According to the Inland Empire Center of Excellence, some of the most in-demand jobs for the region are industrial maintenance mechanics, HVACR technicians, and industrial electrical technicians.
“While the InTech Center can effectively train students for advanced manufacturing, we know that people need both skills and experience,” said Tony Myrell, chairman, San Bernardino County Workforce Development Board. “With support from The James Irvine Foundation, InTech Center is able to provide this next level of learning for students. It’s an important part of the entire workforce system that we are building here in our County.”
Over the next two years, the program will pay for 60 interns. Each intern will make $15 per hour for up to 400 hours of work. Some of the participating companies include: California Steel Industries, H&A Transmissions, ReRubber, Specialize Heating & Air Conditioning and C Stoneham among others.
For major regional employers such as CSI, the payoff in internship programs is not only a trained employee, but also one who will stay for a while. Rod Hoover, CSI’s human resources manager, approached a local community college to develop summer internship programs. As a result, eight of every 10 interns turned into permanent employees after deciding to stay at CSI.
“A skilled workforce is a critical site selection criterion when companies are considering expansion and relocation. We want to be ahead of the curve and provide the workforce needed today and for the long term. Programs such as InTech and partners such as the Irvine Foundation are making that happen,” said Reg Javier, San Bernardino County Economic Development Agency Deputy Executive Officer.
“InTech is an effective model of collaboration between education, government and business to help ensure people have the competitive training needed for good-paying jobs in advanced manufacturing,” said Jessica Kaczmarek, senior program officer, The James Irvine Foundation. “The Irvine Foundation looks forward to learning with regional leaders about how this program benefits the employer and the student and provides pathways toward improved economic opportunity for working people.”
The James Irvine Foundation is a private, nonprofit grantmaking foundation dedicated to expanding opportunity for the people of California. The Foundation’s grantmaking focuses on expanding economic and political opportunity for families and young adults who are working but struggling with poverty.
About San Bernardino County: Located at the heart of Southern California, an economy of 23 million people, San Bernardino County is the largest county in the United States. Its vast borders stretch from the greater Los Angeles area to the Nevada border and the Colorado River encompassing a total area of 20,160 square miles. Comprised of 24 cities, San Bernardino County encompasses more than two million residents with a workforce of nearly 900,000. Its assets include an innovation corridor of close to two dozen colleges and universities supporting a strong, diverse workforce along with an unparalleled collection of roadways, runways and railways that lead to regional, national and international business centers. Visit www.SBCountyAdvantage.com.
About InTech: InTech, is located on the campus of CSI near Fontana in San Bernardino County, to train workers in advanced manufacturing, advanced transportation, logistics, energy and utilities as well as computer/ICT/digital media. The programs are conducted at no cost to employers and employees thanks to the TAACCCT grant. For more information, visit www.intechcenter.org