As a 2014 NVCC Advanced Manufacturing program graduate, Hannah Lenoce, 19, has a promise of employment for at least the next four years at Marion Manufacturing Co. in Cheshire. At the end of this time, she will be nationally certified as a tool-and-die maker, making her highly marketable and transferable at a time when most manufacturers are scrambling to replace an aging workforce.
In just one year, Hannah has improved her status from high school dropout to manufacturing apprentice. Under the Connecticut Department of Labor’s Apprenticeship Program, she will work 40 hours-per-week at Marion, where she also completed an internship, under the tutelage of an experienced journeyman to learn the ins and outs of her craft. Her pay is set and will be incrementally raised as she achieves milestones in her hands-on education.
This isn’t the only door that’s been opened to Hannah, according to Douglas Johnson, Marion’s vice president of operations.
“We’ve been fielding a lot of requests from the Precision Metalforming Association (PMA) for access to Hannah,” he said. PMA has a division for women in manufacturing. “She’s going to be featured in their “My Life” publication and she’s been given a scholarship to attend their annual meeting. She’s also been invited back to the college to do some manufacturing commercials.”
For Hannah, the program allowed her to be herself, and continue learning the way she learns best: hands-on. When she dropped out of high school it was to work full-time, even 50-60 hours per week, because she prefers tangible results.
“I like to keep myself moving,” said Hannah in an April 30 interview. “I’m really happy with where I’m at.”
Students who earn their two-semester certificate in Advanced Manufacturing Machine Technology Level II at Naugatuck Valley Community College are qualified to work in machine technology and CNC manufacturing environments. The certificate provides desired work skills by combining hands-on instruction, interactive lab experiences, theory and possible on-site manufacturing internships. The College currently offers daytime and evening manufacturing cohorts. Learn more.