NIMS Welcomes Announcement to Connect Training to Careers

Focus on industry-education partnerships will prepare more students and workers for success in high-demand careers

The National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS) applauded efforts by the Administration to better align education with skills employers need through the fourth round of grants under the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) competitive grant program.

The solicitation for grant applications offers incentives to community college applicants to partner with national industry associations and employers to implement quality education and training programs that are based on industry-recognized credentials and connected to labor market opportunities.

"There are an estimated 99,500 projected job openings for machinists and 117,100 projected job openings for industrial maintenance technicians nationally through 2020," said Jim Wall, Executive Director, NIMS. "We stand ready to partner with community colleges across the country to help prepare more people for these growing careers by ensuring the highest quality training that is directly aligned to the industry's skills requirements."

NIMS has developed the skills standards in 24 operational areas ranging from entry-level to master-level that cover the breadth of metalworking operations, including metalforming and machining. All NIMS standards are industry-written and industry-validated, and are subject to regular, periodic reviews under the procedures accredited and audited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).  NIMS certifies individuals' skills against these national standards via 52 distinct certifications that companies can use to recruit, hire, place, and promote individual workers. Training programs incorporate the credentials as performance or completion measures of academic coursework in metalforming or machining programs. The credentials are often the basis for articulation among training programs. In 2013, NIMS issued 13,888 industry-recognized credentials, representing a 59% increase from 2012.

NIMS has also launched a new Competency-Based Apprenticeship System for the nation's metalworking industry.  Developed in partnership with the United States Department of Labor, and over 300 companies, the new apprenticeship system integrates NIMS national standards and skill certifications into measuring required competencies.