Monday, December 9, 2013

         Tristan Worley, of Westminster, middle, was hired as a Production Technician at U.S. Engine Valve in Westminster two weeks before he finished Goodwill's manufacturing class earlier this year.  He since has been promoted to Maintenance Apprentice.  He is pictured with Gayle Jenkins, training coordinator at U.S. Engine Valve, left, and Mary Ann Craft, human resources manager.


SCMC Training Builds Manufacturing Workforce


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                    12/6/2013

                                                      (By Lisa Garrett)

         PENDLETON --- Local business and manufacturing leaders recently were asked when hiring entry-level operator positions to take a look at individuals who have earned the nationally-recognized SCMC training credential that prepares them to be work ready from day one.

         At a December 5 kick-off breakfast meeting, participants learned about the newly revamped South Carolina Manufacturing Certification (SCMC) program, a quick, yet comprehensive training route for individuals seeking to enhance their skills and to secure full-time employment as operators in manufacturing.

         The SCMC, formerly Manufacturing Skill Standards Council (MSSC) training, is a 200-hour curriculum that includes the opportunity to earn eight nationally recognized certifications. Topics include industrial safety, quality, blueprints and measurement, production processes and some basic understanding of industrial equipment and maintenance.

         "This is a broad approach to economic development and work force development," said John Lummus, vice president for economic and institutional advancement at Tri-County Technical College.  He thanked the business and industry partners "who have provided input to help get this manufacturing certificate program off the ground.  The SCMC program will allow South Carolina to bring its workforce to a higher level."

         Earlier this year the S.C. Legislature funded the SCMC program by allocating money for each technical college in the state.

         Representatives from Tri-County's Corporate and Community Education Division, the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce and the South Carolina Technical College System rolled out details about the program at the meeting. 

         Pat Michaels, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries of the Upstate/Midlands, explained how the organization funds SCMC training and provides counseling and job placement services for individuals in its program. 

         Tristan Worley, of Westminster, was a participant in Goodwill's first manufacturing class after being laid off from a local industry.  "All 13 of us got job offers before the end of the class," said Worley, who was hired as a production technician at U.S. Engine Valve in Westminster two weeks before he finished the class taught by Tri-County's Corporate and Community Education Division instructors.  While in training, he continued to pursue his Industrial Electronics Technology degree.  

         "We got the best of the best with Tristan and we have big plans for him," said Mary Ann Craft, human resources manager at U.S. Engine Valve.  "Goodwill highly recommended him to us.  After interviewing Tristan, he was our number-one pick.  He has proven himself and is doing an excellent job," she said, adding that he has been promoted to maintenance apprentice. 

         "Goodwill has very good training programs, and we are pleased to see it has expanded to the manufacturing sector.  The SCMC program shows that a person is putting forth the effort to obtain a certification that will open up opportunities for him or her.  This program is important to us in building a bigger pool of applicants while helping us to recruit the best associates for our skilled machinist positions," said Craft.

         "I can't say thank you enough," said Worley, who just a year ago, had been laid off and couldn't find job until he says he "stumbled" upon the Goodwill program.  "I had no idea my training would lead to this. Goodwill was been so supportive in helping us to find jobs. I am proud to be a valued employee at U.S. Engine Valve."

          "Tri-County is a key partner and a catalyst in helping people find employment," said Michaels.  "Goodwill has a 90 percent placement rate for those who are certified. We provide access to the American Dream - full-time employment with good wages and benefits and opportunities for a career path."

          "Anderson, Oconee and Pickens counties are pro-manufacturing and South Carolina is committed to being a manufacturing state," said Ron Humphries, associate program director for the Center for Workforce Excellence at Tri-County.  He noted that today's jobs aren't your grandparents' or parents' manufacturing jobs. "It's advanced manufacturing.  We treat the class like a job -- you must be on time and ready to work.  In class they earn an OSHA 10-hour safety card, a Six Sigma yellow belt certification and a national MSSC credential in safety, quality, product system and manufacturing awareness which translates into stackable credentials for college credit."

         After they pass the last certification exam, participants receive eight hours of simulation training where they apply the quality, safety and lean manufacturing skills learned in class. 

         "The SCMC certificate gives applicants them a leg up and many employers consider it to be equivalent to a year of industry experience," said Humphries.

          "We are building an entry-level manufacturing workforce  -- folks who have completed this training need to go to the front of the hiring line," said Susan Pretulak, vice president of economic development and workforce competitiveness for the SC Technical College System.  Many want to re-career into manufacturing.  With this certificate under their belts, they deserve that look. It's a stackable credential with WorkKeys® and SCMC credentials. The WorkKeys® test is free, the training is free.  Your voice as manufacturers is key to continuing this process.  Take a look at these folks when you are hiring," she said. 

         For more information about scholarships, contact Ron Humphries at 646-1723 or


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