Meadville- A Hub of Manufacturing in PA

Meadville, located in Crawford County, was once known as the Tool City Capital of the United States. In Crawford County, 20% of employment is in the manufacturing industry with manufacturing representing only 12% of the jobs in the state and only 11% of jobs nationally.

With more tool shops and more manufacturing jobs per capita than any other city in the nation, Meadville continues to serve as a hub of manufacturing jobs and trade education in Pennsylvania.

History of Meadville

Founded in 1788 by David Mead, Meadville is the county seat of Crawford County and was the first permanent settlement in northwest Pennsylvania. By the late 1800s, Meadville’s economy included the industries of agriculture, iron production, and logging. Industrial enterprises continued to develop in Meadville and surrounding cities.

In 1913, Colonel Lewis Walker brought the Automatic Hook and Eye Company of Hoboken to Meadville, becoming a significant leader in the development and manufacture of the zipper and earning Meadville the nickname, Zipper Capital of the World.

The Automatic Hook and Eye Company, later known as Talon, was one of the largest employers in Meadville during the height of World War II, holding 5,219 of the 9,000 industrial jobs. The many small dye shops in Meadville can be credited to the apprenticeship program that Talon provided in the 1950s and ‘60s that trained people to make dies.

As Talon moved out of Meadville, people who had gone through the apprenticeship program branched off and used their experience in precision machining to open their own die shops, helping to grow Meadville’s manufacturing presence across that state and the nation. Among Meadville’s many tool and die shops, they are also home to major manufacturers such as Channellock Tools.

Become Part of the Thriving Manufacturing Industry

Manufacturing is a crucial part of our everyday lives, from our cell phones to the cars we drive, the parts could not have been produced without the skills of a precision machinist. At PMI, our CNC Machinist program is designed to help students learn the necessary skills and gain the hands-on experience needed to help them on their way to a career in the manufacturing industry.

Contact PMI today to learn more about our CNC Machinist program or about our other skilled trade programs that can prepare you for a career in the manufacturing industry!

Motion, Automation, and Mechanical Component Repairs

From the food and agricultural industries to the manufacturing industry, there has been an increase in the use of automation. Automation helps to increase efficiency, profitability, and reduce workplace injury throughout a variety of industries.

While some may say automation is taking jobs away from people, it is allowing employers to put employees where they are needed most and is creating a demand for workers educated in the use and repair of automation technology. Continue reading

The Oil and Marcellus Industry is Looking for Trained Welders

As the oil and Marcellus industry grows and new plants are being built, like the $6 billion Shell Ethane Cracker plant in Potter Township, Beaver County, PA, the demand for trained welders is steadily growing in our area. According to CareerLink, it is estimated that Shell will need to hire roughly 3,000-4,000 welders during the construction of the plant in Beaver County. Continue reading

PMI receives $150K grant to improve manufacturing training programs

Meadville Tribune – May 12, 2018 Reprint

Precision Manufacturing Institute will receive a $150,000 grant to improve its manufacturing training programs, Gov. Tom Wolf announced Friday.

The grant from the Pennsylvania Manufacturing Training-to-Career program will enable PMI to add more advanced trainings and place an additional focus on employability skills that prospective workers need to find a job in manufacturing.

“Our participation in the PA Manufacturing Training-to-Career grant program will enable PMI to provide the local economy with additional skill training identified by our Program Advisory Committees and local employers,” said Ed Petrunak, director of PMI. “The Department of Community and Economic Development was helpful and easy to work with throughout the entire application process and we appreciate their support.”

The grant will provide $150,000 to the Precision Manufacturing Institute to enhance and expand current curricula for CNC machinists, electro-mechanical technology and electric ARC welding.  The funding will also enable PMI to provide more advanced training for fourth- and fifth-axis CNC programming and operation, as well as automated conveyor system training in the electro-mechanical technology program.

The expanded curricula will specifically address crucial employability skills like interpersonal communication, teamwork, professionalism and resource management that regional manufacturers have identified as a need in applicants and recent hires. The program will draw applicants from Crawford, Erie, Warren, Forest, Mercer, Venango and Clarion counties to PMI’s 32,000-square-foot Bessemer Street facility. It is expected to provide 60 trainees with the technical and professional skills they need to enter the workforce.

“The purpose of the new Manufacturing PA initiative is to listen to our partners and employers in the manufacturing sector to identify their greatest areas of need, and then provide support that will address that need,” Wolf said. “This funding to the Precision Manufacturing Institute is a great example of how the private and public sectors can come together to strengthen the manufacturing workforce in Northwest Pennsylvania and help put workers on a path to success.”

The Pennsylvania Manufacturing Training-to-Career grant is designed to provide funding for training programs to help unemployed and underemployed individuals, as well as those with barriers, to gain the skills they need to gain employment in the manufacturing sector. Wolf recently announced additional Training-to-Career grants to the Manufacturers Research Center, the Greater Johnstown Career & Technical Center and Robert Morris University.