SAU Tech receives nearly $ 1.5 million for defense industry training center

Southern Arkansas University Tech announced a grant of $ 1,495,154 from the United States Department of Labor and the Delta Regional Authority as part of the Workforce Opportunities for Rural Communities initiative.

The new award is the second WORC grant that SAU Tech has received in recent years. The college has already received a grant to expand healthcare training opportunities for Delta counties in the SAU Tech service area. The project includes the development of partnerships, new health care programs and student health care service with additional supports.

The WORC grant awarded on September 28 provides funds to create an Aerospace Defense Manufacturing Center of Excellence that will offer the following activities:

• Provide training to 600 participants (labor market entrants, displaced workers and existing workers) in DRA counties of Bradley, Calhoun, Cleveland, Dallas, Ouachia and Union in southern Arkansas.

• Develop and develop new and current partnerships with Highland Park Industries-Aerojet Rocketdyne, Lockheed Martin, Armtec Defense Technologies, General Dynamics, Raytheon, Spectra Technologies and Arkansas Workforce Services, the Arkansas Office of Skills Development, The Ouachita Partnership for Economic Development , SAU Tech Adult Education and SAU Tech Career Academy Program.

• Update and renovation of the dedicated training space on the main campus of SAU Tech inside the Highland industrial park, creating a unique center for personalized training, pre-employment training and training provided by the industry for years to come.

The grant project falls under the College’s Workforce Training Division under the supervision of Principal Randy Harper and Deputy Principal, Karmen House. The project will start on October 1 with the notification of all partner industries involved in the realization of the project.

SAU Tech officials hope the success of this project will change the landscape of the region’s economy by using partnerships with WIOA programs and adult education to provide a support system for new workers and displaced workers who are participating in the project, according to a press release. The DOL / DRA WORC grant initiative aims to develop and thrive the communities of the Delta so that the people who live there can work and thrive where they live.

Milton S. Rodgers

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