Free S. C. Manufacturing Certification Opportunity Still Available

In 2013, the 16 members of the SC Technical College System launched the South Carolina Manufacturing Certification (SCMC) to grow the skilled workforce in their regions. Now, Piedmont Technical College is leading the charge.

The System committed to training 1200 certified production technicians to meet employment needs in manufacturing. Since the initiative began, the System as a whole has trained or is training 518 students with 69 percent of those either employed or enrolled to continue their education. Piedmont Tech’s SCMC program has trained or is training 83 students, with nearly 80 percent employed or enrolled.

“In general, we have been among the leaders in completing training sessions across the state,” said Rusty Denning, associate vice president for Continuing Education and Economic Development. “Because the goal of the System is to train 1200 people, we will continue to offer this free training opportunity.”

SCMC is an entry level advanced manufacturing certification designed to provide the skills needed for individuals to be successful in the growing manufacturing industry. It consists of 200 hours of state-funded training comprised of three core certificate programs plus 40 hours of hands-on training in state-of-the-art labs. The certifications include: MSSC Certified Production Technician, Lean Six Sigma Yellow Belt and OSHA – General Industry.

“This is a great opportunity for individuals who want to go into manufacturing, but lack some of the basic skills needed to qualify for the jobs that are available,” said Denning.

The certifications cover areas such as safety, quality assurance, production and maintenance. In addition, soft skills such as ethics, communication skills and team building are also covered.

Ideal candidates for the program include unemployed, underemployed or veterans looking to start a career in advanced manufacturing. Applicants must successfully complete a drug screen and background check, score silver or better on the WorkKeys test, provide documentation of at least a high school diploma or GED and be committed to completing the program.

Both day and evening classes are being offered at PTC. Day classes run Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. while evening classes are held Monday-Thursday from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. The application deadline is the week prior to the first day of class to allow the drug screen and background check.

“The program requires a considerable commitment from the student, but the benefits provided make it worthwhile,” said Mike Reid, dean of operations and services for Continuing Education and Economic Development. “These certifications will open the door to almost any manufacturing plant across the country for at least an interview.”

For more information about the SCMC program, contact Reid at (864) 941-8481.