January 11, 2024

JWCC, GREDF, and Regional Companies Launch Illinois’ First FAME Chapter to Boost Advanced Manufacturing Training

Employers to Invest in National Work/Learn Program to Build Global-Best Multi-Skilled Technicians

John Wood Community College (JWCC), the Great River Economic Development Foundation (GREDF), Dot Foods, Gardner Denver, General Mills, Knapheide, and Titan Wheel launched Illinois’ first Federation for Advanced Manufacturing Education (FAME) chapter today.

The Great River FAME chapter designation signals the investment of the region’s top manufacturers in premier workforce training to build more highly skilled, globally competitive, and sought after talent to meet the challenges of today’s modern manufacturing workforce. Every year, FAME graduates nationwide transition into well-paying, diverse careers in critical disciplines across the manufacturing industry.

Founding members of the Great River FAME chapter held the first board meeting today at JWCC’s Workforce Development Center. Each company has committed to sponsor selected students to enroll in a work-study program to earn an Advanced Manufacturing Technician (AMT) credential. Students will attend JWCC two days a week and work three days a week for one of the five sponsoring employers.

A competitive recruitment and selection process will take place this spring and the first cohort of students will begin in the Fall of 2024. Details and application materials can be found at www.greatriverFAME.org or by contacting Kayla Wentz at kwentz@jwcc.edu or 217.641.4957.

FAME was created by Toyota and moved to the Manufacturing Institute for national scaling in 2019. Today, the Manufacturing Institute, as the workforce development and education partner of the National Association of Manufacturers, is proud to manage FAME USA as it continues to grow across the country with the support of more than 400 manufacturers.