HCC and MSSC join forces to expand skills training certifications
Houston Community College (HCC) and the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council (MSCC) have teamed up to ensure the relevancy of HCC’s programs for students and local industry. Wednesday, July 24, Mr. Leo Reddy, CEO of MSSC and HCC Acting Chancellor, Renee Byas formalized the partnership at a signing ceremony. The agreement includes program and curriculum development and expansion of National Association of Manufacturing endorsed certifications offered by HCC and will emphasize job preparedness training and the use of “skill standards”.
Several elected officials and industry leaders attended the ceremony to offer their support for the initiative.
Texas State Representative Jim Murphy, District 133, spoke of recent legislative action designed to increase job opportunities and the appropriate training required for Texas’ burgeoning manufacturing industry.
“The legislature is really paying attention. We passed maybe five different workforce bills this past session,” said Murphy. “This is the number one issue for employers in Texas. They want to have fair regulations and that’s absolutely important, but what keeps them up at night and what they talk to us about is the ability to fill the jobs.”
Joe. W. Arnold, the Manager of Government Affairs for the BASF Corporation, spoke in his capacity as the Chairman of the Workforce Committee for the Texas Association of Manufacturers, stating, “Manufacturers across this state and manufacturers across this nation are clamoring for people that are educated and trained in something that is relevant to them.”
Arnold remarked that the partnership between HCC and MSSC is important for manufacturers, because it means that the college will be providing manufacturers with the opportunity not only to sustain their operations, but to grow their operations. He added, “And the stronger manufacturing is in this state, the better off each and every one of us are.”
Prior to signing the agreement, Reddy commented on the change in philosophy for both industry and education institutions. “Maybe, if we make the purpose of education to be the preparation of all individuals, every citizen, for productive employment. This has to be based on the much closer relationship between the employer and the community and education, but I think this is what we’re seeing here,” said Reddy.
The Greater Houston Partnership lists Houston as the number one manufacturing city in the country. Houston has the jobs, but local industry needs a well-trained, skilled workforce. As a leader in workforce training, HCC is meeting Houston-area employer needs, emphasizing job preparedness training and the use of “skill standards” for students, and through this partnership will expand its National Association of Manufacturing endorsed certifications by adding the level one Certified Production Technology Certificate.
HCC has been developing an enhanced workforce instruction model for the past 18 months with a focus on the high demand for skilled employees in Manufacturing. Students will have the opportunity to quickly learn the skills and knowledge for a certificate or degree in their target industry. HCC currently offers two MSSC certifications in Logistics, and the new partnership will include the MSSC Certified Production Technician as part of the AAS in Manufacturing. Currently, HCC offers American Welding Society (AWS), NCCER, and Workkeys: Career Readiness Certificates.