2017-09-22 / Front Page

YCCC partnership with Pratt & Whitney continues

The two collaborate on training new hires
By DINA MENDROS
Associate Editor

WELLS — The local community college and a North Berwick aircraft manufacturer have worked together for a number of years and are continuing that relationship. Earlier this week, York County Community College announced the extension of one of its training programs for Pratt & Whitney.

The Maine Quality Centers is providing another grant that will pay YCCC to train up to 96 new hires at Pratt & Whitney.

The six-week Next Gen Machining Program will provide instruction in precision machining, blueprint reading, math and more.

Since February 2015, YCCC has trained about 150 to 180 Pratt & Whitney employees in the Next Gen Machining Program, according to a college press release.

The Maine Quality Center provides grants “to help employees train their new hires ... at no cost to the employer or trainee” said Stephanie Bourque, director of Continuing Education at YCCC.

The Next Gen Machining program is one of three training programs that YCCC provides for Pratt & Whitney at the college’s Sanford location, she said.

They also provide a registered apprenticeship program and a quality inspector program.

The collaboration between YCCC and Pratt & Whitney has been mutually beneficial. The North Berwick company was a major donor to the college’s recent capital campaign to fund it’s new 18,000-square-foot building in Wells. As a result of it’s generosity, the new building that includes eight classrooms, a lecture hall, a small conference room and a math lab was named in the company’s honor. Students have been using the Pratt & Whitney Building since the start of the semester earlier this month. The official grand opening and ribbon cutting will take place on Wednesday.

YCCC not only provides training to Pratt & Whitney employees, but also to workers employed at other companies, said Bourque.

“Hussey Seating was one of our partners,” she said.

The college has also provided a registered apprenticeship program for the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery. She said the college is open to working with other employers to provide employee training at its campuses in Wells or Sanford, or providing courses at the company’s location. YCCC also has a number of online courses. Programs can range from communications to supervisor training, machining or just about any course the college offers. Training programs can include individual courses, or the ability to earn certificates or associate degrees.

To help pay for employee training, Bourque said, “any employer in the state of Maine can apply for a Maine Quality Center grant.”

— Associate Editor Dina Mendros can be reached at 282-1535, ext. 324, or dmendros@journaltribune.com.

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