By Holly Desrosier
Craven Community College (Craven CC) received a mock assembly line from Moen with the purpose of training students attending workforce development classes at the Volt Center. This donation arrived in June and coincided with the recent launch of several Craven CC workforce development (WFD) programs at the Volt Center.
“We’ve donated an assembly line to the Volt Center as close as possible to what the working environment will be like at Moen,” said Tony Norwood, plant manager at Moen. “We really felt it would be important for the associates to go through that to experience what it would be like because our hope is that they leave here, immediately start working for us and are very successful.”
The assembly line simulates four stations that employees use at the actual facility: spout build operation, handle build operation, pack operation 1 and pack operation 2. It is utilized during the Manufacturing Career Pathway program, designed to train students in the wide range of skills and knowledge required to succeed in the manufacturing industry. Upon successful completion of the program, participants will have earned certificates for OSHA 10-hour Industry Safety, Lean Six Sigma White Belt, Forklift Operator and ACT WorkKeys National Career Readiness.
“Our partnership with Moen represents their commitment to provide training, equipment and tools to make the students that take the program successful in their employment at Moen,” said Eddie Foster, executive director of the Volt Center. “In addition, that makes Moen very successful because of the limited amount of time required for internal training, making them more productive and competitive.”
Moen’s donation is actively contributing to the success of students in the program, as well as several local manufacturing businesses. In exchange for Moen’s generosity, Craven County is rewarded with highly skilled workers who are primed and ready to contribute as productive team members. According to the North Carolina Department of Commerce, Moen is the second largest manufacturing company in Craven County, ranking number five overall, and they are always looking for skilled employees.
“The relationship between Moen and Craven CC began many years ago as we looked for partnerships to provide a great training environment for our workforce,” said Norwood. “We’ve worked with them on projects for at least 10 or 15 years to try to develop both our team leader workforce, the kind of skilled workers, and then we look for these opportunities to train the direct line associates.”
As one of the first classes to be held after the Volt’s opening, the Manufacturing Career Pathway program has exceeded expectations. All seven students who completed the first class were offered jobs: three went to B/S/H/, two went to Chatsworth and two went to Moen. Its success led to a second class that started just three days after the previous one’s completion. There are currently 14 students enrolled in the second class, and a third is expected to pick up after its completion on Sept. 6.
“We are also in communication with and have already started the development of mock assembly lines with B/S/H/ and Chatsworth,” added Foster. “Just another example of how industry partners and the college are working together.”
For more information about the Manufacturing Career Pathway program, call Cat Johnson at 252-633-0857 or visit the Volt Center at 205 First Street in New Bern.
This article was originally published in the New Bern Sun Journal on Aug. 20, 2019.