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IDA to help STC manufacturing expansion gear up
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SAVANNAH—At its May meeting, the Effingham Industrial Development Authority voted to support the expansion of workforce development training with the construction of a precision manufacturing lab at the Effingham Campus of Savannah Technical College.

The commitment, $100,000 over five years, will assist the college in constructing and equipping a state-of-the-art lab at its Effingham Campus. This new construction would nearly double the lab space currently available for industrial-related instruction and will be customized to support the specific industries that operate in the region.

“We are delighted that the IDA has stepped forward to support this initiative,” said STC President Dr. Kathy Love. “We are excited about the tremendous interest that continues to be shown in Effingham and across the region. Our machine tool and welding programs are thriving at the Effingham campus and primed for expansion. We know that our manufacturing partners throughout the region require a highly-skilled workforce in order to continue to thrive.”

Manufacturing is making a major comeback in southeast Georgia. Statistics show that regionally, more than 200 manufacturers have a total annual payroll of nearly $700 million and employ more than 14,000 workers, making this sector of the local economy critically important to economic development and quality of life.

“Supporting this initiative just made sense for us,” said IDA CEO John Henry. “We work closely with companies that are looking to locate or expand in our region and workforce is always a central factor in their decisions. We expect that our manufacturers will want to join in this effort as well, since it directly benefits their businesses.”

Savannah Technical College is in the midst of a $10 million capital campaign, with $5 million devoted to precision manufacturing throughout the region. The college seeks funding to expand manufacturing at its Liberty and Savannah campuses as well. The campaign will expand access to workforce development opportunities and provide students with access to training in a practice-oriented environment sufficient to become knowledgeable and job-ready.