GOSHEN — Ivy Tech Community College and Elkhart Community Schools are starting a new partnership that will focus on increasing training opportunities for residents in the area of machine tool technology and computer numerical control machining, officials announced on Tuesday.

This is the first agreement that focuses strictly on ensuring technical training is locally available for skilled manufacturing careers; this agreement streamlines the process, eliminating overlap from both organizations. The manufacturing sector is a key economic driver in Elkhart County, making up nearly 50 percent of the local economy, the news release states. 

The joint venture offers students the opportunity to earn a certificate in Machine Tool/CNC technology through a series of evening courses. Students can ultimately earn a technical certificate (TC) and an associate degree (AAS) through the designed pathway over the next 12-24 months following completion of the training courses, the news release states.

“Ivy Tech is excited to partner with Elkhart Community Schools to meet the workforce needs of the community as it will increase the workforce skills available to employers in Elkhart County by increasing the vibrancy of the county,” said David K. Balkin, Ivy Tech South Bend-Elkhart Chancellor.

The created pathway will offer residents an opportunity to begin careers in local companies within the machine tool/CNC career pathway, which are key to local industry success.

“In ensuring that students follow their particular pathways to their individual futures, a relationship of the kind we have with Ivy Tech provides us this opportunity to work with the community partners on life-long learning,” said Steve Thalheimer, Elkhart Community Schools Superintendent. “Not only are we assisting our high school students with critical career and technical education, but we are also providing on-going training so in demand by local industry.”

The courses are set to begin in January of 2020 and will be an Ivy Tech Machine Tool/CNC curriculum, housed at the Elkhart Area Career Center.

Interested students can begin enrolling for the classes as early as Oct. 18 by visiting the South Bend-Elkhart campus or

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