August 2015
Maine's community colleges offer affordable, customized training and continuing education that give business and employees the skills they need to compete. Here's a snapshot of what we've been doing lately and what we can do for you.
A mix of the right ingredients 

Gina Nzanza Kiese, a trained pastry chef who hails originally from Congo, recently participated in a 96-hour hospitality training academy for unemployed and underemployed Mainers. Funded by an MCCS Maine Quality Centers grant, the training was delivered by SMCC in partnership with the Portland Jobs Alliance, Coastal Enterprises Inc., the Maine Innkeepers Association, Portland Adult and Community Education, and Preble Street Resource Center.
Gina Nzanza Kiese

Nzanza Kiese came to Portland by way of Belgium, where she was the personal chef to the Argentine Ambassador.

For her job interview as part of the training, she was asked to bring samples of her work. As a resident at Hope House (a shelter for new Mainers), Nzanza Kiese didn't have access to a kitchen. With the help of those she met through the training program and her children's day care provider, she found a kitchen and brought pastries to her interview. She was hired on the spot, and with this opportunity has now been able to move into an apartment with her two children.
"This would never have happened to me in Belgium," said Nzanza Kiese. "Here, people who are almost strangers are willing to help you. I have never experienced that before."
"We were very pleased to participate in the hospitality training program," said Jim Brady, the owner and developer of The Press Hotel. "Part of this project is about investing in community, and there's no better way to do that than by providing stable employment opportunities to local residents. The employees who went through the hospitality training came to The Press Hotel with a solid skill base and ready to work. We're delighted to have them."

In all, nine of the ten who participated in the training have been hired at Brady's hotel. After taking some courses at SMCC, the tenth student is continuing her education at USM. In recognition of the program's success and its collaborative approach to workforce development, the Greater Portland Council of Governments (GPCOG) singled it out for a special award at its annual meeting.
SMCC provides training to new marine electricians at BIW  
SMCC President Ron Cantor, BIW's Cynthia Lobikis, and Maine Quality Centers Executive Director Jim McGowan.

SMCC is providing technical training to nearly 100 new marine electricians at General Dynamics Bath Iron Works, improving the workers' career opportunities and providing BIW with the qualified employees it needs for future success.

This is the second time this year that a grant from the MCCS Maine Quality Centers has enabled SMCC's Business and Community Partnerships division to provide hands-on training to marine electricians at the company.

"Getting these new hires trained and on the deckplates is key to BIW's operational success. We are excited about the opportunity to expand upon this model in the future in order to continue to develop the workforce at BIW," said Jonathan Mason, the company's director of human resources services.
YCCC partners with local employers to train workers

Two York County businesses have turned to YCCC's Department of Business and Community programs to help train its workers.
  • New employees at Pratt & Whitney are being trained at the company's North Berwick facility and the college's Precision Machining Technology facility in Sanford. In addition to the hands-on training, YCCC is providing team building, writing and speaking skills, conflict management, and other management skills training.
  • Northeast Coating Technologies (NCT) partnered with the college to provide customized management and leadership training for 55 full-time senior managers, shop workers, and office employees at its Kennebunk location. "Employees enjoyed and learned so much from the class, they have requested additional training in the future," said Cathy Spencer CFO/owner of NCT. "As a small company in the southern Maine area, we appreciate the commitment of YCCC to bring in-house training to our staff. YCCC really understands the needs of a growing business."
The training for both projects is funded through the MCCS Maine Quality Centers program.
Manufacturing Academy helps fill need for skilled machinists 

Before SMCC's Manufacturing Academy ended in May, two of the students had already been hired by local companies needing skilled workers.
Students and faculty celebrated the completion of SMCC's Manufacturing Academy.

Ten students completed the 320-hour CNC machine operations training which was delivered by SMCC's Business and Community Partnerships division and the college's integrated manufacturing technology program.
MCCS works to expand college credit for prior learning

A federal grant that supports the expansion of academic programs and training in the field of information technology is enabling Maine's community colleges to better assess and award credit for learning that occurs outside the classroom.

As part of the $13 million Maine is IT! grant, faculty and staff from across the MCCS participated in training this summer to begin implementing standardized assessments of prior learning gained through such means as military and registered apprenticeships and workforce training and certifications.

This grant initiative coincides with the ongoing collaboration between the University of Maine System and MCCS to strengthen transfer between the two systems and insure that credit awarded for prior learning is consistent and accepted at public colleges and universities across the state.

In addition to strengthening prior learning assessment, Maine is IT! is enabling the state's community colleges to add new programs, certificates, courses, and short-term training in information technology. Learn more about the course and programs being offered this fall.
MCCS faculty, staff, and administrators met at CMCC in June to strengthen the assessment of learning that occurs outside the college classroom.

Chris Paradis
CMCC Corporate Training Coordinator Chris Paradis is the recipient of the Maine International Trade Center's President's Award. The honor is given to individuals who have shown exceptional leadership and support to the Trade Center and international trade in Maine. Paradis has served on the MITC board for nine years and currently is the board chair.

Four NMCC students who competed in the SkillsUSA 2015 State Conference in March walked away with medals. Liza Clark competed in automotive refinishing and took home the gold. Silver medals were awarded to Joe Cushman for his work in diesel equipment and Kurtis Gagnon for welding. Josh Pike won bronze in automotive service. More than 600 students representing 23 career and technical schools and colleges participated in the competition.

YCCC students Lodan Fecteau and Ashle Cole recently competed in the SkillsUSA National Competition held in Louisville, KY. Fecteau, a student in the liberal studies/veterinary technology program, placed 14th in the nation for customer service. Cole, a liberal studies/nursing student, placed fourth in the nation for medical math. SkillsUSA is a partnership of students, teachers, and industry working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce.

This spring CMCC provided 16 hours of incumbent worker training for six employees at Biovation II, LLC, a high-tech manufacturing company located in Boothbay. The LEAN Manufacturing training was funded through a Maine Quality Centers grant. It is just one of the many training partnerships Maine's community colleges have formed recently with businesses. Since April, MQC has signed agreements to provide training projects through the colleges with companies including J�tul North America (SMCC), General Dynamics (YCCC), Tilson Technology Management (SMCC), American Steel and Aluminum (SMCC), and Hussey Seating (YCCC).

CMCC is one of a select number of colleges that provide specialized training for educators in precision machining as a
Haas Automation Computer Numerical Control teacher training location.

Maine's community colleges offer over 300 program offerings designed to meet the needs of both students and employers. That means our skilled graduates are in high demand, and expanding businesses have access to the skilled workers they require. New degree and certification programs have been added this year to address the growing and changing needs in each region. They include:
  • CMCC's new degree program in life science enables students to enter the workforce as scientific technicians or transfer for further study in fields including biomedicine, biochemistry, environmental science, and health care.
  • EMCC is offering a new outdoor recreation and tourism program that enables students to earn a number of industry certifications, including a Registered Maine Guide License.
  • New and enhanced IT degree programs are being offered statewide through Maine is IT!
  • KVCC's new sustainable design/build (timber frame) program provides students with the technical knowledge and hands-on skills needed to gain entry-level employment in timber framing and/or other types of building construction.
  • WCCC is offering a new mental health rehabilitation technician/community program under its human services degree that will lead to jobs in the mental health field.
See the complete list of programs offered systemwide
For more information about the training and workforce development programs offered by Maine's community colleges:
323 State Street
  Augusta, ME 04330

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The MCCS is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution and employer. For more information, please call the MCCS Chief Human Resource Officer at 207.629.4000. Read the complete notice of Non-Discrimination.