Forsyth Tech chosen for national initiative

Published 11:33 am Monday, January 10, 2022

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Forsyth Tech has been chosen as one of 13 participants in The Century Foundation and the Urban Manufacturing Alliance’s Industry and Inclusion 2.0 cohort. This national initiative is focused on community colleges delivering impactful credentials and addressing barriers in manufacturing careers.

This is an 18-month, learning-based opportunity for community colleges that works to “leverage a peer network and industry expertise to support community colleges seeking to explicitly center racial equity in credentialing programs, deepen cross-sector collaboration and support services, and increase the diversity of the student body and local manufacturing workforce,” according to the Urban Manufacturing Alliance’s website.

Since their inception a century ago, community colleges have been more representative of the communities that they serve, with larger segments of their student body coming from underserved populations than four-year institutions. This, when coupled with other important aspects of workforce-readiness that community colleges provide the places they serve, make them perfectly poised to support the skyrocketing demands for a diverse, skilled workforce in manufacturing over the next decade.

The Industry and Inclusion cohort will help participating colleges expand their networks, learn from experts in the field, received tailored technical assistance, contribute to influential research and demonstrate results for students from diverse backgrounds.

Participation in the program will impact several of Forsyth Tech’s programs, including the wide range of offerings in the Advanced Manufacturing Department, such as computer-integrated machining, mechanical engineering technology and mechatronics. It will also support the business and industry partners that work with Forsyth Tech through the Learn and Earn Apprenticeship Program (LEAP for short), which works with local powerhouses like Siemens Energy, Pepsi Bottling Ventures and Progress Rail.

“This is a great opportunity to leverage our partnerships with local industry to continue to develop equitable opportunities for individuals seeking credentials that lead to family supporting wages in manufacturing related careers,” said David Dinkins, chair of the Advanced Manufacturing Department at Forsyth Tech.

The purpose of the program dovetails perfect with Forsyth Tech’s vision of being a catalyst for equitable economic mobility, empowering lives and transforming communities.

As always, the faculty and staff Forsyth Tech are eager to bring what they learn to the community they serve. “We look forward to sharing the valuable information that we glean from being a part of this important and impactful cohort,” said Jennifer Coulombe, associate vice president of business partnerships and process improvement at Forsyth Tech.