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Help Shape Ohio’s Industry-Recognized Credentials List

December 22, 2021

To help meet future workforce needs, Ohio continues to prioritize industry-recognized credentials for high school students. As part of this effort, the Ohio Department of Education and the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation maintain Ohio’s Industry-Recognized Credentials List.

Manufacturers have an integral role in how this list is built and validated. To ensure students are earning credentials that meet manufacturers’ needs, OMA members are encouraged to review the manufacturing and engineering portions of the credential list — then provide feedback through this survey, which is open until Jan. 26. 12/21/2021

Webinar: Attracting, Retaining a Multi-Generational Workforce

December 22, 2021

On Jan. 19, the Ohio Manufacturing Extension Partnership (Ohio MEP) will host a webinar on how to attract and retain a multi-generational workforce. The webinar will share current trends and discuss best practices in onboarding and on-the-job training that can directly impact retention rates and keep employees engaged. Register here. 12/21/2021

Ohio Unveils Updated Top Job List

December 17, 2021

The DeWine-Husted administration has unveiled the state’s updated Top Jobs List, which combines the state’s prior in-demand and critical jobs efforts.

According to the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation, this interactive list — which contains both “in-demand jobs” and “critical jobs” and is based on feedback from Ohio’s business community — is a tool to help students and job searchers take advantage of employment opportunities. 12/15/2021

Ohio Camp Prepares High School Students for Careers

December 17, 2021

In preparation for 2022 workforce planning, OMA members may want to make note of a unique summer camp that provides Ohio high school students career preparation in a hands-on environment.

Ohio Business Week allows students to compete as industry professionals, sharpen communication skills, and face real-world challenges that will help prepare them for life after school. Business leaders contribute their time and resources to support the students’ journeys in entrepreneurship. The week-long program will be held at Ohio University in Athens from July 10-16, 2022. Students can apply online. 12/15/2021

In the Spotlight: Ohio Manufacturing’s Rising Stars

December 10, 2021

While manufacturing is Ohio’s largest economic sector, many young Ohioans have had little to no exposure to the industry. That’s why the Ohio Manufacturing Workforce Partnership (a collaboration of the OMA and Ohio TechNet) has produced its “Why Manufacturing?” video series.

Available at the OMA’s YouTube channel, the videos spotlight four rising stars in Ohio manufacturing:

  • Josh Critchfield, test technician at The M. K. Morse Company;
  • DeAndre Lurry, engineering technician at Lincoln Electric;
  • Kara Mecz, paint line specialist at The M. K. Morse Company; and
  • Ryan Robinson, an automation field applications technician at Lincoln Electric.

The series complements recently added videos at, which showcase exciting jobs in modern manufacturing. Share these resources with young people, as well as educators and career counselors, and in your recruiting efforts. 12/8/2021

MVMC Celebrates a Decade of Success

December 10, 2021

Last week in Canfield, manufacturing leaders were joined by local and state officials to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Mahoning Valley Manufacturers Coalition (MVMC). Over the decade, the organization has collaborated frequently with the OMA on workforce services initiatives, and is one of 13 OMA-endorsed local sector partnerships.

The event featured dinner, networking, and keynote speaker Lydia Mihalik, director of the Ohio Department of Development, as well as OMA staff. Mihalik called the MVMC a model for the rest of the nation. Jessica Borza, MVMC executive director, was recognized for her leadership in establishing new talent pipelines through MVMC’s pre-apprenticeship and manufacturing mentorship programs.

The event was covered by The Business Journal. 12/6/2021

Among the speakers at MVMC’s 10-year celebration were (from left): Ryan Augsburger, OMA president; Lydia Mihalik, director of the Ohio Department of Development; Jessica Borza, MVMC executive director; Eric Burkland, OMA president emeritus; and Brian Benyo, president of Brilex Industries, MVMC’s founding member.

Virtual D&I Summit Set for Dec. 14

December 10, 2021

On Tuesday, Dec. 14, join The Manufacturing Institute for a virtual event that will explore dimensions of diversity and inclusion specific to expanding the manufacturing workforce. The Institute’s Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) Summit will describe actions you can take now to move your business and the industry forward. Learn more and register. 12/7/2021

New Funding Round for TechCred Begins in January

December 10, 2021

Ohio employers looking to upskill their workforce can begin applying for the next round of TechCred beginning Monday, Jan. 3. The application period will remain open until Monday, Jan. 31 (3 p.m. deadline).

Utilize this OMA guidance document to learn about TechCred and how to apply. A couple of rule changes have been made to the program. (See the bolded bullets in the OMA’s document.)

Since the launch of TechCred in late 2019, 1,615 employers have been approved for reimbursement, supporting 32,269 tech-focused credentials for employees. At last check, manufacturers — including smaller businesses — accounted for roughly half of all approved applications.12/9/2021

In the Spotlight: Women in Manufacturing

December 3, 2021

Women make up roughly half of the U.S. workforce, but comprise only about 30% of manufacturing employees, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.

This week, the Ohio Manufacturing Workforce Partnership (a collaboration of the OMA and Ohio TechNet), along with The Manufacturing Institute, hosted a webinar focused on recruiting women in manufacturing. It featured panelists Edye Buchanan, certified manufacturing technologist with BriskHeat Corp.; Samantha Case, manufacturing engineer with Kennametal Inc.; and OMA board member Dale Foerster, vice president of Starr Manufacturing Inc. The three discussed their careers and offered advice for women entering the industry. Watch the recorded webinar.

Meanwhile, The Business Journal (Youngstown) recently spotlighted female leaders on the manufacturing floor in Trumbull County. 12/1/2021

Study: U.S. Needs ‘Manufacturing Renaissance’ Fueled by Major Workforce Expansion

December 3, 2021

A new bipartisan report by the Ronald Reagan Foundation calls for a “manufacturing renaissance” in America amid the intensifying economic and military competition with China. The study says if the U.S. fails to train two million more skilled manufacturing workers by 2030, our economy may be unable to keep up with China’s threats to America’s national security.

The report offers four key recommendations for policymakers, including boosting the manufacturing workforce through credentials, apprenticeships, and internships. 11/29/2021