Chaffey College

The James Irvine Foundation has awarded the Chaffey College Foundation a $1.3-million grant to support internships, pre-apprenticeships and training at the Industrial Technical Learning Center in Fontana.

The James Irvine Foundation has awarded the Chaffey College Foundation a $1.3-million grant to support internships, pre-apprenticeships and training at the Industrial Technical Learning Center in Fontana.

This is Chaffey’s second $1.3-million grant awarded by the foundation in the last two years.

The grant will provide accelerated industrial technical training programs and paid internships in advanced manufacturing and logistics for low-income Inland Empire residents.

Chaffey College Superintendent/President Dr. Henry Shannon said InTech has seen a 12 percent increase in enrollment due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant will help the center meet that increased demand, as well as the needs of industry in the region.

“Students are coming to InTech in search of pandemic-proof careers,” Shannon said. “And thanks to the James Irvine Foundation, we will be able to serve them and help transform their lives.”

Sandra Sisco, director of Chaffey College economic development and the InTech Center, said the grant will help InTech to rapidly rebuild the region’s economy by providing skilled employees for in-demand industrial automation careers. A study by the McKinsey Global Institute found that 67 percent of executives have accelerated their adoption of automation due to COVID-19.

“We are still dealing with the challenges of the pandemic, but as the region begins to emerge, InTech will play a vital role in helping us bounce back and close the skills gap by providing training designed by industry to meet their employment needs,” Sisco said.

The grant will help InTech offer accelerated entry-level training programs in a variety of manufacturing and logistics automation jobs, including welding, industrial maintenance, robotics and cybersecurity. Students who successfully complete one of these programs will then be eligible to be placed at a company for a 160-hour paid internship at $18 an hour.

“We are grateful for our partnership with the James Irvine Foundation’s Better Careers initiative because it aligns with our vision of transforming lives through education,” said Foundation Executive Director Lisa Nashua.

U.S. manufacturing is facing an unprecedented talent shortage as the economy continues to grow and the aging workforce looks to retire. A 2018 study by the Manufacturing Institute found that there will be an estimated 2.4 million jobs that will go unfilled by 2028 due to a lack of skilled workers available to take those positions.

For employers interested in selecting a paid intern, contact the center at intechcenter@chaffey.edu. For general information or to learn about qualifications to participate in one of InTech’s training programs, call the InTech Center at (909) 652-8488 or visit www.intechcenter.org.

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