Monroe Community College is teaming with the Eastman Business Park to create the Finger Lakes Workforce Development Center.
MCC will offer manufacturing-oriented programs and skilled trades training within classroom and lab space at the Eastman Business Park.
The center was formed in response to the region’s demand for skilled workers across manufacturing sectors and technical occupations.
The regional facility will house portable training equipment to support MCC’s curricula, including courses in mechatronics, a multidisciplinary field that incorporates engineering, mechanics, electronics and other technical learning.
A portion of the space in the facility will be used for noncredit apprenticeship training for skilled trades’ careers, such as electricians and pipefitters.
“MCC’s vision for the center includes creating flexible spaces that support a variety of programs and allow us to quickly modify programming to match the skills the college has measured as being most in demand within the region’s key technology clusters,” said Todd Oldham, vice president of MCC’s Economic Development and Innovative Workforce Services Division.
Dolores Kruchten, president of Eastman Business Park, said having a workforce development program on the same site as many companies within those key clusters—including photonics, energy, chemical processing and food processing—provides a resource for some of Rochester’s newest entrepreneurs and employers.
“We are thrilled to be working with MCC to help provide well-trained employees to companies within the region, especially those that have chosen to locate at EBP,” Kruchten said. “The workforce development center is a key plank in our strategy to revitalize the Park as a hub where learning, development, innovation and manufacturing are happening at accelerated rates.”
Eastman Business Park’s 1,200-acre campus is home to more than 60 tenant companies and owners, representing some 5,000 non-Kodak employees.
The first phase of the facility’s development will be funded through $6 million in NYSUNY 2020 awards, with the remaining phases being supported by $5.4 million in Upstate Revitalization Initiative grants through Empire State Development.
Additionally, the project will leverage the recently awarded $6 million grant through the federal America’s Promise initiative, and a private investment of $320,000 from JPMorgan Chase & Co., to support student tuition and fees for qualified students and programs, according to a release from MCC.
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