Prairie State College Awarded $526K Grant from U.S. Department of Labor

Chicago Heights, IL–(ENEWSPF)–October 2, 2012.  Prairie State College (PSC) recently was named recipient of a $526,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Labor.  The grant was part of the $12.9 million awarded to the Illinois Network for Advanced Manufacturing, of which PSC is a member. The network members agree to use the funds for the Earn and Learn Advanced Manufacturing Career Lattice Program, which targets trade adjustment assistance workers, veterans, and others seeking additional training to secure and/or maintain employment by earning stackable, portable certificates and degrees leading to highly paid jobs within advanced manufacturing while simultaneously working in the industry.

Dale Ballard, professor/coordinator, millwright/tool and die/hydraulics/plumbing, mechanical design, says PSC plans to use the funds to purchase a mechatronics trainer to enhance the industrial maintenance program, as well as several CNC machines.

“The purchase of these technologies will improve the college’s machine and manufacturing programs,” he said.

The grant also will help make training more accessible for in-demand and highly paid manufacturing careers. 

The grant award is part of the U.S. Department of Labor’s $500 million in grants awarded to community colleges to develop and expand innovative training programs for jobs in high-wage, high demand fields. Those grants are part of the $2 billion federal Trade Adjustment Assistance community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) initiative, which promotes skills development and job opportunities in fields such as advanced manufacturing, transportation and health care, as well as science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) careers through partnerships between training providers and local employers.

The U.S. Department of Labor is implementing and administering the program with the U.S. Department of Education.