Freedman Seating Company

JARC and Partners Launch Austin Careers in Manufacturing Programs on West Side of Chicago

Jan 24

Press Release

January 24, 2017

JARC and Partners Launch Austin Careers in Manufacturing Programs on West Side of Chicago

Jane Addams Resource Corporation (JARC) is replicating its hallmark Careers in Manufacturing Programs to the west side of Chicago in partnership with Austin Coming Together and Manufacturing Renaissance. Operating out of the Austin College & Career Academy, JARC will provide manufacturing job training and support services for low-income adults from the Austin neighborhood and surrounding communities. Programs offered will include the Computer Numerical Control Machinist (CNC) and Manufacturing Bridge Programs. “This expansion to the Austin neighborhood will improve access to high quality skills training to community residents with barriers to employment in an underserved community” observes Guy Loudon, JARC’s Executive Director.

JARC’s program replication in Austin builds on Manufacturing Renaissance’s Manufacturing Connect training program for high schools students along with its National Institute of Metalworking Skills-accredited training facility. Austin Coming Together will utilize its strong presence and engagement in the Austin Community to recruit participants, drive resources into the program, and build strong community partnerships to sustain the program. Other partners include Chicago Public Schools, Chicago-Cook Workforce Partnership, and Local Initiatives Support Corporation. Private funders, including the Polk Bros. Foundation, William McGowan Charitable Trust, U.S. Bank, and the Field Foundation of Illinois, have provided critical support to launch this program.

The Austin Careers in Manufacturing Programs represents JARC’s second geographic expansion in the Chicago region, after the Metro West Careers in Manufacturing Programs in Addison, IL. As a part of JARC’s current Strategic Plan, the agency is scaling its impact on jobseekers and employers through geographic expansion and replication. Along with this scalability initiative, JARC also replicated its Welding Fast Track at Chicago Women in Trades and launched an affiliate organization in Baltimore, MD in 2015.
One in four Austin residents are unemployed, facing major barriers to employment such as criminal records, limited access to transportation, and a lack of critical literacy and math skills. At the same time, Austin is an important neighborhood for manufacturing within a nationally significant region. The five-mile radius around the Austin College & Career Academy is home to about 700 small to mid-sized, family owned manufacturing companies like Freedman Seating.

“We’ve experienced firsthand how the programs offered by JARC make a significant impact on manufacturing and job opportunities. Over our 20-year relationship, we have proudly hired more than 50 JARC graduates. This is a highly needed and welcomed partnership for the Austin community,” says Craig Freedman, CEO of Freedman Seating. Aligning with JARC’s dual customer approach to job training, the Austin Careers in Manufacturing Programs will simultaneously provide living wage career paths to Austin residents while helping Austin manufacturing employers remain competitive.

Starting February 1st, JARC is holding weekly application sessions, held every Wednesday from 4:00 to 6:00 PM, at 231 N. Pine, Door #1. At the application session, prospective trainees will learn about JARC’s training options, tour the facility, and take the Test of Adult Basic Education (TABE). Applicants do not need to make an appointment to attend an application session, but all applicants must arrive to application sessions on time. For more information about enrolling in the program, please contact Jessica Newsome at jessican@jane-addams.org or 773-751-7113.

For more information or media inquiries, please contact Hayley Crabb, Senior Director of Development & Communications, at 773-751-7120 or via email at hayleyc@jane-addams.org.

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