The 2014-15 academic year was the first year that NVCC offered credentials from the National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS). That year NVCC students completed 127 credentials. This year NVCC awarded 148 NIMS certifications to students. These nationally-recognized, portable, stackable credentials are often used by manufacturers to identify qualified candidates for employment.
NIMS was established in 1995 by the metalworking trade associations to maintain and enhance a globally competitive United States workforce. The organization sets skills standards for the industry, certifies individual skills against those standards and accredits training programs that meet NIMS quality requirements.
“Area employers view this (NIMS) certification as a differentiator. It gives Naugatuck Valley Community College students a competitive advantage when applying for jobs with manufacturing companies,” says Joseph DeFeo, program director, Advanced Manufacturing Technology Center, Naugatuck Valley Community College. “Due to the strength of our Danbury Incumbent Worker certificate program, where most students are obtaining NIMS credentials, the numbers are increasing.”
Tooling U is a software package that NVCC purchases from Tooling U-SME. The software contains modules featuring questions and applications of manufacturing skills to compliment the lessons learned in the classrooms. It is a teaching aide that reinforces the lesson with quizzes and practical applications. NVCC works with both Tooling U-SME and NIMS using the training modules to prepare students for NIMS certifications. Areas of manufacturing for which NIMS offers credentials include CNC Milling: Operator, CNC Turning: Operator, CNC Turning: Programming Setup & Operations, Drill Press Skills I, Grinding Skills I, Job Planning, Benchwork & Layout, Measurement, Materials & Safety.
NVCC has been using the software since the inception of the Advanced Manufacturing Technology Center (AMTC) in 2012. The AMTC at NVCC boasts a 100% job placement rate since it began offering the NIMS certification. The collaboration between NVCC, Tooling U-SME and NIMs is increasing the number of skilled metal workers and machinists, while impacting the critical skills gap in America.