Valley Manufacturers Have Job Openings for Trained Workers

Manufacturers across the country and here in the Shenandoah Valley are struggling to fill advanced manufacturing positions.  A talent and skills shortage is having a significant impact on these companies as well as on communities and job seekers.  This skills gap is widening, with an estimated 2 million manufacturing jobs going unfilled over the next decade.  With employers eager to fill these high-demand positions and job seekers eager for a good living wage and a satisfying career, a great opportunity exists for both manufacturers and the workforce. Successes are mounting, and with committed statewide partnerships, Virginia is on the path to developing a world-class talent pipeline by 2020.

Virginia’s Career Pathways for Individuals with Disabilities

In 2015, the Virginia Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services (DARS) and the Virginia Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired (DBVI) were awarded a five-year grant by the U.S. Department of Education to develop Virginia's Career Pathways for Individuals with Disabilities (CPID).

CPID focuses on helping participants, which include young adults and veterans, gain credentials and postsecondary training for high-demand, high-quality occupations in industry sectors such as Advanced Manufacturing and IT.  These Virginians earn marketable credentials that are industry recognized, making them workforce-ready and putting them on a path to both a living wage and a career. 

In support of the goal to connect qualified workers with open, well-compensated manufacturing jobs, the Shenandoah Valley Workforce Development Board and CPID recently partnered to hold a Dream It. Do It. Virginia Advanced Technology Academy for local students with disabilities. 

CNC Machining Academy Opens the Door

Hosted by Valley Career and Technical Center on July 10-14, 2017, the Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Machining Academy gave 12 participants,  ages17-21,  hands-on experience with state-of-the-art equipment and positive exposure to the opportunity-rich world of today’s manufacturing industry.

Over the course of the five days, participants gained a basic foundation of CNC, a modern manufacturing specialty using computers to control the precision of production. Students received personal attention from technical experts and the opportunity to tour F.R. Drake Company, a local modern manufacturing plant that has experienced great success in attracting the next generation and developing its workforce pipeline.

Dream It. Do It. Virginia Advanced Technology Academies are free for participants and are designed for adults and/or students who meet certain eligibility requirements.  SVWDB and CPID are teaming up again with an Advanced Technology Academy in September.

September 15-17, 2017

Dream It. Do It. Virginia 3D Academy

Hosted by Dabney S. Lancaster Community College in Rockbridge County

This program for adults and college students will put participants in the role of industrial designer.  From concept through completion, students will gain hands-on experience and insight into the world of 3D printing and its integral role in the Shenandoah Valley’s advanced manufacturing industry.  Learn more about this academy’s eligibility requirements and registration information.

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