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* Shoreline leads state, nation with jobs program


SCC student Richard Stevens (left) works with CNC program instructor Keith Smith. Stevens was the first Shoreline CNC student to receive his national certification from the National Institute for Metalworking Skills


Shoreline Community College and 10 other community and technical colleges in Washington state are among the first in the nation to implement a new national program touted by President Obama as key to getting Americans back to work.

Working together, the 11 colleges are offering a two-quarter certificate in computer-numeric controlled machining. The course is designed specifically to meet the needs of the aerospace industry and move well-trained workers into well-paying jobs.

“This is exactly the kind of response industry, students and taxpayers need from our community and technical colleges,” said Mary Kaye Bredeson, Director for the Center of Excellence for Aerospace and Advanced Materials Manufacturing based at Everett Community College. The Center is a one-stop resource center for education and industry in Washington.

The11 Washington colleges are: Bellingham, Columbia Basin, Everett, Green River, Olympic, Shoreline, South Puget Sound and Yakima Valley community colleges along with Bates and Renton Technical College and Lake Washington Technical Institute.

“We’re aligning the needs of students and industry,” Shoreline Community College President Lee Lambert said. “When we do that, we’re helping the economy get back on track.”

The national program, Right Skills Now, was designed by The Manufacturing Institute, an affiliate of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), to respond to the immediate talent crisis facing manufacturing industries across the country. According to a new study by The Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte, more than 80 percent of manufacturers report not finding people to fill skilled production jobs.  As a result, there as many as 600,000 manufacturing jobs open right now in the United States, the report says.

Right Skills Now has gained national recognition as part of the efforts and recommendations endorsed by the President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness .

“We are pleased to acknowledge the efforts in Washington to launch Right Skills Now,” said Jennifer McNelly, Senior Vice President at the Manufacturing Institute.  “The state joins a national community implementing this accelerated path built on the Manufacturing Skills Certification System, to train and deliver just-in-time talent to manufacturers so they can sustain and expand operations.”

The key principles of Right Skills Now programs include:

·         Fast-tracked, for-credit career training

·         Industry credentials with value in the workplace

·         Pathways to advancement and degrees

Right Skills Now allows individuals to earn college credit and national industry certifications in two academic quarters, preparing them for immediate employment in high-quality manufacturing jobs and giving them a solid foundation to advance in higher education and careers. Training partners include ACT, the certifying body for the National Career Readiness Certificate – the foundational credential in the Manufacturing Skills Certification System – and the National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS), the certifying body for the series of machining and metalworking credentials. Right Skills Now fast-tracks and focuses career training in core employability and technical skills by “chunking” relevant curriculum that leads to interim credentials in critical machining skills.

 Shoreline Community College instructor Keith Smith developed the program being used at the Washington colleges. Smith worked with members of his program’s industry advisory council as well as other industry representatives to be sure course content is as up to date as possible.

“That Keith’s work is being adopted as the standard is testament to the quality of Shoreline’s program,” said Shoreline’s Dean of Science, Susan Hoyne, who oversees the CNC Machinist program. 

The program uses internships, a key component of Right Skills Now, with local companies to help students make the transition from acquired knowledge to applied skills. A key benefit is that Smith has already taken the Shoreline program through the rigorous certification process endorsed by the National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS).

The certificate is designed to meet employers’ needs by quickly getting them workers with the required knowledge, skills and abilities and to meet students’ needs by giving them employable skills now plus college credit, something they can build on in the future.

“This is the first time we have a group of community and technical colleges all teaching the same curriculum, providing skills that are closely tied to employers’ needs and offering a nationally recognized certification,” Bredeson said. “Washington leads the way in aerospace manufacturing and now we’re leading the way in aerospace manufacturing training.”

* Clean Energy Technology hosts community solar meeting

The Community Solar Project


An informational meeting about the how’s, why’s and finances of solar electric installations for individual homes and group participation.


7 p.m., Wednesday, March 14


Shoreline Community College

PUB Quiet Dining Room

16101 Greenwood Ave. N.,

Shoreline, WA 98133


            Free, sitting may be limited.
            Reserve seating at:



Mike Nelson, Clean Energy Technology Program Director

Can solar work in the Puget Sound region?


OK, but can it be affordable?


More about those and other questions will be available at 7 p.m., Wednesday, March 14, in the PUB Quiet Dining Room at Shoreline Community College, 16101 Greenwood Ave. N., Shoreline.

 The Clean Energy Program at Shoreline Community College and the Shoreline Solar Project are hosting a public informational meeting to explore the details of solar electric projects for residential uses as well as larger installations. With current incentives, a carefully planned solar electric project can actually make money for the homeowner and investors in larger projects.

Trying to see through the glare around solar electric systems can be difficult.  The Community Solar Project goal is to present clear information about the law, installations and suppliers to make it easier to go solar. If the goal is solar on the home, or participating in a project on a local public building, the Community Solar Project has the answers.

Silicon Energy, a Washington-based manufacturer of high quality solar modules and inverters, will make a presentation on the hardware required for a solar electric system.  Silicon Energy also intends to offer factory pricing to participants for group purchases made by homeowners and others interested in The Community Solar Project.

For system design, Clean Energy Technology Program students from Shoreline Community College will offer site assessment and design services at no charge. The student teams are supported by Silicon Energy, college faculty and local electrical contractors to assure quality. If it makes sense, and cents, to you, the students will complete a system design portfolio.

For owners of homes nestled among the wonderful Northwest conifers, project participants will be available to discuss how you may join others, with cooperation from local government, identify and plan a community solar project. Sites for such projects have included schools, fire stations and city halls, but may also be sited on other local public facilities.

For financing questions, representatives from Puget Sound Co-operative Credit Union will be available. The credit union already has a track record of supporting such systems, convinced of the financial and societal viability. Solar may never again be as affordable and profitable as it can be right now. The Washington State incentive expires in 2020 so each year of delay decreases the available incentives. The 30 percent federal tax credit expires in 2016.

And for answers to installation questions, qualified and licensed electricians will be available to talk about the general approach as well as the details specific sites.