ANDERSON --- The 10th anniversary celebration of Tri-County Technical College's Anderson Campus, its first community campus, included the launch of a pilot Manufacturing Scholars Program with Michelin North America designed to build and grow the workforce of the future.

This special partnership announcement was held at the Anderson Campus, located at 511 Michelin Boulevard.

"We are excited to launch our pilot of the Michelin Manufacturing Scholar program alongside our Tri-County Technical College partners," said Melanie McLane, facility personnel manager for Michelin's manufacturing facilities in Anderson County.

"It is the first of its kind in the State and will serve as a model for the other Michelin plants and technical colleges in South Carolina," added Dr. Ronnie L. Booth, president of Tri-County Technical College.  The program will begin Fall Semester 2017.

The new Michelin Manufacturing Scholars program is designed for entry-level manufacturing professionals and is a pathway leading to manufacturing careers with Michelin North America.  The one-semester program is completely customized to meet the needs Michelin has for qualified entry-level manufacturing professionals at their two plants in Tri-County Technical College's service area - US 2 in Sandy Springs and US 8 in Starr.

It includes a nine-credit-hour certificate in Manufacturing and paid work hours each week at Michelin for hands-on experience. 

Nearly a year ago, Michelin and Tri-County officials began working together to address a skills gap Michelin faced in hiring employees for manufacturing professional careers.  In response to this need, Michelin officials worked to develop this program that aligns the daily duties of the Michelin Scholar with the curriculum developed by the Tri-County team.    

"It is about broadening the concept of our current Michelin Technical Scholar program - expanding it by doing something new and different for manufacturing professionals while building our community and ensuring our growth," said McLane.

"We knew our desire to build, develop and grow the workforce of the future is a shared vision in Anderson County," said McLane.  "Michelin's ambition is to establish similar programs at other technical colleges in proximity to our sites around the state.  The expansion and further deployment potential has been a part of the overall vision as we have worked to create a program that is sustainable and expandable," she said.

"Ultimately, we have a simple goal: we want to develop the workforce of the future. By doing this, we can influence the stability of our communities, economic growth in our state, and more families can enjoy the same benefits that mine has. It's an honor and a privilege to work in a company with a high purpose. We care about giving people everywhere a better way forward," said McLane.