Greater Phoenix continues to be the home to a broad and diverse manufacturing base in industry sectors such aerospace, communications, electronics, medical devices and more recently solar. Although many of these industry sectors have reduced employment during the recent downturn in the global economy, aerospace and electronics equipment manufacturers and those companies who are suppliers to these segments have experienced continued need for skilled workers. Often these companies have not been able to find qualified applicants even with the high unemployment rate.
Recognizing that the region’s ability to provide a steady supply of skilled and knowledgeable employees is critical to the continued growth and success of the regional manufacturing industry, a collaborative effort was launched in the summer of 2009 to develop an Apprenticeship Program in the area of Precision Manufacturing. This collaborative, known as the Arizona Precision Manufacturing Apprenticeship Program (AzPMAP), has brought together representatives from industry, community colleges, secondary education, the public workforce system, and the State’s workforce development division in the development of a comprehensive apprenticeship program. The vision of the collaborative has been to build a complete system which reduces employer recruitment costs and administrative burden, produces value added new employees from day one, and provides the apprentice with nationally recognized portable credentials.
AzPMAP has established an Advisory Board to oversee the operation of the program as well as a 501 (c) (3) to manage revenues and expenditures of the program.
Founding collaborative organizations include;
- Arizona Tooling and Machining Association
- Arizona Commerce Authority, Workforce Development Division
- Excaliber Precision Machining
- Maricopa Community Colleges
- Center for Workforce Development
- Estrella Mountain Community Colleges
- Gateway Community College
- Maricopa Skill Center
- Mesa Community Colleges
- Maricopa Workforce Connections
- Modern Industries
- Phoenix Workforce Connection