Goodwin, Pratt & Whitney Celebrate Success of Manufacturing Initiative
An “institution of milestones” added two new highlights to its collection on Friday by celebrating the early success of its manufacturing initiative.
Goodwin College held two ceremonies on its River Campus, one honoring the first cohort of students to complete the Certified Production Technician (CPT) program, and a second thanking Pratt & Whitney for its generous support and investment. The latter gifted Goodwin with a $125,000 donation aimed at helping the College grow the program and in turn support the development of Connecticut’s workforce.
“Even while Washington was stalled in a quagmire, Connecticut moved forward,” said Congressman John B. Larson, an East Hartford native, who was instrumental in helping Goodwin to create the program.
Pratt & Whitney presented a check to the College during a ceremony attended by many supporters of Goodwin’s Certified Production Technician program. The College launched the initiative in May 2013, becoming the first college in New England to offer a path toward a national and portable credential through the Manufacturing Skill Standards Council (MSSC).
Goodwin President Mark Scheinberg, speaking earlier Friday to the first cohort of students to be credentialed, said that Goodwin was an “institution of milestones” that should celebrate the successes of the first steps in the manufacturing initiative.
The College and Pratt & Whitney are natural partners in the endeavor, which has great potential for both East Hartford institutions. In fact, United Technologies, the parent company to Pratt & Whitney, had two employees who were among the first eight students to get the MSSC credential, which is attained by meeting high manufacturing standards.
“We are very pleased to be part of supporting this fantastic program here at Goodwin,” said Joe Sylvestro, Pratt & Whitney Vice President for Manufacturing Operations.
Sylvestro presented the check to Goodwin during the ceremony, which took place against the backdrop of antique Pratt & Whitney machinery now on display in the Goodwin College lobby.
“You’ve done so much for us through the years,” said Goodwin College Vice President for Advancement Brooke Penders, addressing Pratt & Whitney. “This is just another feather in our cap in terms of our partnership.”
Congressman Larson commended Pratt & Whitney and Goodwin, as well as the local International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers members who were in the audience. Larson worked with IAM leadership to help develop the program initially, realizing that MSSC credentialing could benefit workers in Connecticut’s 1st Congressional District and the state as a whole. Given the economic climate and congressional gridlock, Larson said that the idea needed to move forward quickly.
“There was no time to pause, and that’s why we turned to Mark Scheinberg and Goodwin College,” Larson said.
Also present during the check presentation were many of the CPT students who had been honored earlier in the day in a separate ceremony that took place immediately before the presentation.
Al Pucino, director of the Manufacturing Management program, presented the students with certificates honoring their achievement, noting that the CPT program is designed to aid current and future demands within the workforce.
“There are positions to be filled, and we need qualified and credentialed people to fill them,” Pucino said.
All of the students completed the program through the support of their employers, including several successful manufacturing companies throughout the state. The students’ supervisors attended reception in support of their employees.
Recognized during the ceremony were John Winder, Brandon Truman, Olga Perez-Ivin, all of Alpha Q Inc. in Colchester; Stephanie Gregoire and Edwin Sandoval of C&P Manchine Co. in South Windsor; Stanley Rek Jr. of Pratt & Whitney; James Rotundo of UTC Aerospace Systems in Windsor Locks; and Paul Spada Electric Boat in Groton.
“We are incredibly appreciative of you for being willing to take the first shot,” Scheinberg said to the students.
In addition to the CPT program, the College was recently accredited to offer a bachelor’s degree program in Manufacturing Management and associate degree programs in Quality Management Systems as well as Supply Chain and Logistics Management.