East Central College Campus

East Central College is one of nine community or two-year colleges in Missouri to receive funding from the U.S. Department of Labor to implement a statewide training network to prepare Missourians for work in modern manufacturing settings.

Missouri will receive $15 million to fund MoManufacturingWINs, a rigorous certification training model endorsed by the National Association of Manufacturers.

ECC and other schools will collaborate on implementing the network.

Those participating in the statewide consortium are Linn State Technical College, Linn, Metropolitan Community College, Kansas City; Mineral Area College, Park Hills; North Central Missouri College, Trenton; Ozarks Technical Community College, Springfield; State Fair Community College, Sedalia; St. Charles Community College; and St. Louis Community College.

Crowder College also was awarded an individual grant under this TAACCCT program for $2.9 million for a public safety and emergency medical career pathway program.

The grant announcement was made Thursday, Sept. 20, in connection with the second round of awards presented by the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training program.

Missouri’s application for funding in the first round of work force innovation grants was also funded. It supports MoHealthWINs, which trains Missourians for careers in health services and sciences.

Zora Mulligan, executive director of the Missouri Community College Association, said the grant will be of equal benefit to the state and its citizens.

“MoManufacturingWINs will provide employers with the skilled workers they need to keep making things in Missouri,” she said. “It will also provide Missourians with the skills they need to work in a high-wage industry that our economic research shows has job openings — now and in the future.”

The grant-writing effort was led by the Missouri Community College Association and St. Louis Community College, which will act as the grant’s fiscal agent.

Mulligan said the application also was written with input from manufacturing stakeholders such as the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry, state work force development leaders, state work force investment boards and organized labor officials.

The learning model has been designed with intensity, flexibility and comprehension throughout the course of study to make graduates skilled and competitive job seekers.

The program also will allow students to acquire additional certifications like the National Career Readiness Certificate.

It will award industry-recognized credentials that validate students’ mastery of skills in five occupational clusters: production, industrial maintenance, welding, machining, and transportation and logistics.

It includes clearly articulated roles for employers, career centers, as well as the United Auto Workers’ Labor and Employment Training Corporation.

Because of supportive coaching, peer networks and field learning experiences, Missouri’s model has already demonstrated success with adult learners and dislocated workers targeted by the program.

Mulligan said this second award is indicative of the confidence the U.S. Department of Labor has in Missouri to get more skilled workers into the economy.

“We’re not just tasked with training more Missourians,” she said. “We’re being asked to be truly innovative in the way we serve unemployed adults and low-skilled citizens.”