RANDOLPH TOWNSHIP, NJ (Morris County) – Individuals who have struggled to find a pathway to a rewarding career now have a no-cost opportunity at County College of Morris (CCM) to prepare for a well-paying job by taking part in a grant-funded program to become an apprentice in advanced manufacturing.
The $172,500 grant, from the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, will allow 30 participants to take part in the college’s pre-apprenticeship CareerAdvance USA Boot Camp at no cost, covering the entire $3,750 fee.
The Boot Camp prepares students to take part in CCM’s Advanced Manufacturing Apprenticeship program, offered through its Center for Workforce Development. Additionally, during the course of the Boot Camp, the grant will provide students with a weekly stipend to help them pay for such expenses as rent, transportation, childcare or whatever else they need to cover.
As part of the Boot Camp, participants receive assistance with developing a resume and preparing for interviews with the college’s participating employers, which now totals 29, and other businesses, to work as apprentices. Students who complete the Boot Camp and enroll in the apprenticeship program receive paid on-the-job training as they pursue a career in the high-demand and well-paying field of advanced manufacturing.
To date, CCM has placed 92 percent of those who completed the Boot Camp and were seeking positions into jobs with a starting pay of $15 to $21 an hour.
“With over 800 manufacturers in Morris County alone, there is a robust job market and we have demonstrated success helping individuals to get the skills they need to be successful,” said Patrick Enright, vice president of Professional Studies & Applied Sciences. “This is an incredible opportunity for individuals who have struggled to find a better pathway to improve their lives. We look forward to helping even more people to realize their dreams for a better future with the help of this grant.”
To qualify for the grant, individuals need to be at least 16 years old, eligible to work in the U.S. and unemployed or underemployed. They also need to have a career or educational barrier: high school dropout, ex-offender, homeless youth or runaway, aging out of foster care, pregnant or parenting, a disability, low-income youth lacking a high school education or an English language learner.
The first class in the Boot Camp, Shops Basics, is online so participants can get started at any time. Next, students take an Advanced Manufacturing Core class in-person at the college’s state-of-the-art Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering Center. Then two other classes follow that lead to certifications from the National Institute for Metalworking Skills and Computer Aided Design certification. Classes are offered both during the day and evening, providing students with flexibility.
In 2019, CCM was awarded a $4 million CareerAdvance USA grant from the United States Department of Labor to create the Advanced Manufacturing Apprenticeship program to provide people with a low-cost opportunity to prepare for a well-paying career. Since it has started, the program has trained more than 40 individuals to enter the manufacturing workforce. It is estimated that over the next decade, advanced manufacturing will need to fill 3.4 million jobs. Along with good job prospects, the field offers good salaries, averaging more than $77,000 a year in New Jersey, plus benefits.
Virtual Info Sessions on the Boot Camp and Apprenticeship program are being offered on the following dates and times:
- April 27 at 5:00 p.m.
- May 11 at 9:00 a.m.
- May 25 at 12;00 p.m.