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NIIT and TEL Manufacturing Engineering of America Announce New Registered Apprenticeship Program

An innovative program to anchor technician training to broaden and strengthen the talent pipeline

CHASKA, Minn. and HANOVER, Md., Nov. 17, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- TEL Manufacturing and Engineering of America, a leader in the development, manufacturing, and sales of surface preparation systems and gas cluster ion beam (GCIB) technologies for diverse semiconductor applications, and NIIT, the nation's leader in the semiconductor talent pipeline development, announced the establishment of a new Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP), developed to help TEL Manufacturing and Engineering of America's Chaska, MN facility attract, train, and retain a highly talented, skilled, and diverse technician workforce.

This program is part of NIIT's "Growing Apprenticeships in Nanotechnology and Semiconductors" (GAINS) program, a RAP designed to meet the semiconductor industry's future workforce needs. The innovative, competency-based program will leverage NIIT's National Talent Hub. This state-of-the-art portal was created with the support of the National Science Foundation to be a single, national infrastructure to identify individuals, assess and align skills, and target training to meet program requirements.

The new GAINS program leverages a collaborative approach in which other regional partners are engaged to help deploy the program. In Chaska, those partners include Hennepin Technical College and the Minnesota Department of Labor.

NIIT has the exclusive U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) contract to lead the expansion of the nation's RAPs throughout semiconductor and nanotechnology-related industries. The TMEA GAINS program, one of the most innovative USDOL programs for advanced manufacturing, devised to support any U.S. TEL site, can be expanded to include entry engineers and provide a pathway for GAINS pre-apprenticeship programs.

"We appreciate the support of NIIT, Hennepin Technical College, and the Minnesota Department of Labor in establishing the GAINS Registered Apprenticeship Program here at our Chaska facility. With the help of NIIT and regional partners, we will be able to offer not only promising careers but efficient training that will benefit the individual and help make TEL Manufacturing and Engineering of America more competitive", said Mark Dougherty, President of TEL Manufacturing and Engineering of America

"We are excited to support TEL Manufacturing and Engineering of America and TEL US in meeting their workforce requirements. NIIT is uniquely qualified with existing infrastructure and programs as well as industry and apprenticeship expertise specifically designed to meet the needs of the semiconductor industry, and we look forward to bringing it to bear to support TEL Manufacturing and Engineering of America", said Mike Russo, President, and CEO of NIIT.

"Hennepin Technical College is excited to partner with TEL Manufacturing and Engineering of America and NIIT on the GAINS Registered Apprenticeship Program. With the current difficulties of finding highly skilled workers, companies need to develop new strategies for finding and retaining these workers. By developing an Apprenticeship pathway, TEL Manufacturing and Engineering of America is showing innovation in gaining these employees and taking steps to secure their future workforce. This pathway will lead to a successful career for the apprentices and help to provide a stable and quality workforce for TEL Manufacturing and Engineering of America" said Jeff Thorstad, Faculty of Automation Robotics Engineering Technologies/Packaging at Hennepin Technical College.

"We believe registered apprenticeship programs are a solid path for workers to establish career opportunities and for employers to build a motivated, highly skilled workforce," said Nicole Blissenbach, DLI temporary commissioner. "These types of programs help build our state's workforce and continue to strengthen our economy."

About NIIT

NIIT is a 501(c)(3) with a mission to identify roadblocks to innovation in strategic industry sectors – those important to the nation's security and global competitiveness - and ensure they are eliminated. Talent pipeline development is the major focus of NIIT, and through comprehensive industry engagement, NIIT is leading the deployment of a national strategy and infrastructure to broaden and build the talent pipeline for the semiconductor industry and strategic industry sectors. Through its National Talent Pipeline Development Initiative and the support of the federal government, NIIT has developed a comprehensive, nationally integrated approach that includes the alignment of programs K-12 through higher education and adult and veteran training, infrastructure to attract a broader population and improve access, connections to careers and needed training, and the ability to scale to support the nation. For more information, visit

SOURCE National Institute for Innovation and Technology (NIIT)

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