Chattanooga, Tenn. (6 April 2017) — Volkswagen Group of America, Chattanooga Operations (Volkswagen Chattanooga) and Chattanooga 2.0 established a new workforce development program, the Volkswagen Neighborhood Talent Pipeline.
The five week program is offered free of charge to qualified participants. Participants are introduced to the manufacturing process with the goal of preparing them for successful careers at Volkswagen Chattanooga.
“Chattanooga 2.0 approached us with this proposal as Volkswagen Chattanooga is in the midst of our largest hiring push since we came to Chattanooga,” said Mario Duarte, Senior Manager, Organizational Development for Volkswagen Chattanooga. “We believe this program will help new hires arrive with a better idea of what it is like to work in a manufacturing environment, and therefore a better opportunity for success,” Duarte said.
Upon completion participants will receive the Chattanooga Manufacturing Excellence Program (C-MEP) industry certification from the Tennessee College of Applied Technology (TCAT) at Chattanooga State, an OSHA-10 certification, and will receive priority to available entry level production jobs with Aerotek at Volkswagen Chattanooga with an average starting wage of $14.50.
“The C-MEP is an opportunity for our citizens to explore manufacturing as a super career choice and to earn an industry recognized credential in safety,” said Dr. Jim Barrott; Vice President, Technical Studies & Environmental Services/TCAT Director. “The manufacturing industry is in critical need of committed and dedicated workers and the C-MEP program is a unique way to help our manufacturers find such workers,” Barrott said.
The program will take place at the Brainerd Youth & Family Development Center, which has been provided by the City of Chattanooga, and will meet two nights per week for five weeks.
“To fill the new jobs created in our city, Chattanoogans must first have the chance to acquire the skills needed to land and retain these opportunities,” said Mayor Andy Berke. “Through this partnership with Volkswagen and Chatt 2.0, we are not only ensuring our workforce is diverse and prepared for good-paying, middle class jobs but creating a prototype to develop top talent in neighborhoods across our city.”
The Volkswagen Neighborhood Talent Pipeline is the first of its kind partnership between Volkswagen Chattanooga, Chattanooga 2.0, the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce, the City of Chattanooga, Southeast Tennessee Development District, Chattanooga State Community College and Tennessee Career Center.
“It’s encouraging to see multiple members of the Chattanooga 2.0 coalition coming together to create talent pipelines within our community.” Executive Director of Chattanooga 2.0 Dr. Jared Bigham said. “I particularly value the role VW played in catalyzing this effort through their financial support and the mayor's office for convening the parties involved.” Bigham said.
For more details visit: http://connect.chattanooga.gov/workforcedevelopment/
About Volkswagen Chattanooga
The Volkswagen Group of America, Chattanooga Operations, LLC (Volkswagen Chattanooga) manufacturing facility began production in April 2011 and currently builds the all-new Passat sedan, specifically designed for the North American market and winner of the 2012 Motor Trend Magazine Car of the Year award. In July of 2014, it was announced that Volkswagen Chattanooga would build a new midsize sport utility vehicle, the Volkswagen Atlas. Volkswagen Chattanooga currently employs 3000 team members. Volkswagen also announced the establishment of an Engineering & Planning Center in Chattanooga. Volkswagen Chattanooga is the first and only car factory worldwide with a LEED Platinum certification. It is also certified to international standards for energy management (ISO 50001), environmental management (ISO 14001) and quality management (ISO 9001).