SUNY Community Colleges Receive $14.6 Million Grant For Training & Education

September 19, 2012

SUNY partners with hundreds of businesses to meet workforce needs in nanotechnology, advanced manufacturing

Albany – State University of New York Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher today announced that the SUNY community colleges have received a $14.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor to design, implement, and deliver a strategic approach to job training and education for high-need industries such as nanotechnology and advanced manufacturing.

“This federal support will help grow SUNY’s already powerful capacity to prepare students for careers in high-tech and advanced manufacturing fields where there is such a high demand in New York and across the country,” said Chancellor Zimpher. “I applaud our congressional delegation for working so diligently in securing these funds and for their continued partnership and recognition of SUNY’s ability to drive economic development and job growth across New York.”

U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer said, “This multi-million dollar federal investment is a game-changer that will connect unemployed New Yorkers with the state’s top employers that are ready to hire skilled workers in their own backyard. As I toured the state this year and met with business leaders across upstate, company after company told me that they were ready to hire workers, but that there was a mismatch between the workers out there and the skills these companies needed. This grant speaks directly to that need, and it’s just what the doctor ordered to help more upstate New Yorkers get back to work.”

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said, “You won’t find harder working people anywhere outside New York State. This grant can help send more of our veterans and workers who’ve lost their jobs through no fault of their own back to good-paying, family supporting jobs. And by strengthening our workforce with the right skills for the jobs of the future, we can help more local businesses grow, attract new businesses, and set the foundation for a strong and growing economy.”

Congresswoman Kathy Hochul said, “This grant will help prepare individuals seeking assistance at our local community colleges by providing the necessary skills and training to proceed to a four year university or gain employment in areas like advanced manufacturing. I am pleased that the Department of Labor has recognized the great potential of Western New York’s workforce, the power of its educational institutions, and the strength of its advanced manufacturing capabilities.” 

Congressman Chris Gibson said, “I was pleased to lead my House colleagues in supporting this grant application for SUNY community colleges. New York is poised to take the lead on many emerging technologies and ensuring we have local workers to meet the needs of companies looking to locate and grow in New York is critical. Today’s decision will help further continued economic growth in our state, and I look forward to supporting initiatives like this in the future.”

The grant, issued as part of the federal Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) program, will allow a consortium of SUNY community colleges, led by Monroe Community College, to design standardized curricula to directly address the needs of industry employers.

The Manufacturers Alliance of New York (MANY) and the Manufacturers Association of Central New York (MACNY), along with 150 other industry associations and employers across the state, have joined with the SUNY collaborative as key partners to validate curricula, develop and implement learn and earn strategies, raise awareness of the industry sector, and facilitate job placement. Manufacturers of all sizes and their representing associations will be involved from project design to implementation to placement and employment for eligible workers.

Economic development groups working with SUNY include the New York Association of Training and Employment Professionals; local Workforce Investment Boards; NYS Department of Labor; NYS Education Department; Empire State Development Corp.; AFL CIO Workforce Development Institute; Center for Economic Growth; NYS Business Council; Manufacturers Alliance of NYS; Healthcare Association of NYS; Interstate Renewable Energy Council; Garment Industry Development Corp.; Partnership of NYC; NYS Hospitality and Tourism; and the NYS Grape and Wine Association. Employers working with SUNY include: GLOBALFOUNDRIES, PPC, International Business Machines (IBM), Nixon Gear, Novelis, Currier Plastics, Schatz Bearing Corporation, Alcoa Fastening Systems, Advance Coating Technologies, Remington Arms, Bartell Machinery, New York Air Brake, Corning, Inc., Dresser Rand, and Titan X.

Student services, prior learning assessment, workforce readiness assessments, and fast-track developmental education based on best practice models will be offered to help students successfully complete their training and education in two-years or less.

Johanna Duncan-Poitier, SUNY Senior Vice Chancellor for Community Colleges and the Education Pipeline, said, “We are so pleased that the collective work of our 30 community colleges has resulted in such a big win for New York State. The real beneficiaries will be the thousands of SUNY students who will receive education and preparation leading to high-wage, 21st century advanced manufacturing jobs, and our extensive network of industry partners, who will strengthen our state and local economies by hiring here at home.”

Anne M. Kress, president of Monroe Community College, said, “Monroe Community College is proud to lead this initiative coordinating all 30 SUNY community colleges in preparing more New Yorkers for viable advanced manufacturing careers. This investment by the U.S. Department of Labor in our system will help us develop innovative educational programming along career pathways so that individuals can find good jobs today and even better careers tomorrow. We are grateful to the New York state delegation for their advocacy on behalf of our students and their future employers.”

MANY and MACNY President Randy Wolken said, "MACNY and the Manufacturers Alliance of New York are excited to be a part of a state-wide effort to enhance the skills of the residents of New York.  The manufacturing sector is a vital sector that is in critical need of advanced capabilities that this grant will help provide."

F. Michael Tucker, president and CEO of the Center for Economic Growth, said, "The Center for Economic Growth is proud to work closely and collaboratively with SUNY's community colleges here in the Capital Region and beyond as key partners in preparing students of all ages for the careers and opportunities developing in our region. Strong, collaborative and responsive community colleges are essential to our regional competitiveness and we are delighted that this new consortium grant will only further strengthen our already outstanding institutions."

In 2009, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act amended the Trade Act of 1974 to authorize the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) Grant Program.

TAACCCT provides community colleges and other eligible institutions of higher education with funds to expand and improve their ability to deliver education and career training programs that can be completed in two years or less, are suited for workers who are eligible for training under the TAA for Workers program, and prepare program participants for employment in high-wage, high-skill occupations. Through these multi-year grants, the Department of Labor is helping to ensure that our nation's institutions of higher education are helping adults succeed in acquiring the skills, degrees, and credentials needed for high-wage, high-skill employment while also meeting the needs of employers for skilled workers.

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY's 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.3 million students amongst its entire portfolio of credit- and non-credit bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide are nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2021, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunity, visit

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