I&M funds Noble County training program

ALBION — The Noble County Economic Development Corp. was recently awarded $15,000 by Indiana Michigan Power to aid in marketing a free training program for people seeking to gain valuable manufacturing experience.

The Manufacturing Entry Training Academy, or META, is designed to prepare unemployed and underemployed residents of Noble County for good-paying careers in the manufacturing industry. The 42-hour training course covers entry-level manufacturing skill topics such as teamwork, plant safety, quality control and basic manufacturing processes. People who successfully complete the program will have an opportunity to interview with area manufacturers.

Manufacturing accounts for 50 percent of the jobs in Noble County and 60 percent of wages, according to the EDC.

META programming is funded by Northeast Indiana Works, the region’s workforce development board, and the EDC. It is carried out by Kendallville-based Freedom Academy.

Fort Wayne-based Asher Agency is assisting the Noble County EDC with marketing the training program, including developing digital, print, and broadcast marketing campaigns. The goal of the campaign is to increase awareness of the program leading to increased participation, successful completions and a higher job placement rate.

“The META program is an under-recognized resource in Noble County that will improve professional development opportunities for residents and showcase the community as one committed to shrinking the skills gap,” Ashley Savieo, economic and business development manager for Indiana Michigan Power, said in a news release. “I&M appreciates the work of the Noble County EDC, Northeast Indiana Works and Freedom Academy to serve the people and address workforce needs of industry in the area.”

Spots are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information on the META program, visit nobleup.com or call the WorkOne Northeast Career Center at 599-1000.