We’re proud to be a part of an exciting new team of business owners, employers, and educators coming together this spring to launch the Pueblo chapter of the Federation for Advanced Manufacturing Education (FAME). 

What is FAME?

Toyota began FAME in 2008 with a mission to solve the education gap the company was experiencing in the manufacturing industry. The organization teaches high school and college students manufacturing and leadership skills. In its 13 years, FAME has grown to include 400 companies across the U.S.

Who is a part of the Pueblo Chapter?

We’re in good company. Many local businesses came together to be a part of the Pueblo FAME Chapter. Beyond us here at Steel City Solar, the businesses include:

  • Trane Technologies
  • GPS Source
  • Krage Manufacturing
  • Pewag
  • TR Toppers
  • Vestas

It’s not just businesses that have made this Pueblo chapter possible. Community partnership is essential to an undertaking like this. Our community partners include:

Local charity, The R.M. Watts Foundation donated $5,000 to seed the program.  Pueblo Community College (PCC) will be an active participant in the program. Jennifer Sherman, dean of PCC’s Business and Advanced Technology department said in a statement on the college’s website that Trane came and identified Pueblo as having the right components to launch a successful program. 

What Will FAME Do for Pueblo Students?

FAME works to give students who will be entering the workforce additional skills to pursue long-term sustainable careers in manufacturing and STEM industries. Each student chosen for the program receives a paid position three days a week with one of FAME’s participating employers. On the other days of the week, these students attend classes at PCC. The FAME program is currently recruiting students to participate and begin work/school in the fall of 2021. 

The program upon completion is designed to give students everything they need to seamlessly transition into the full-time workforce. After graduating from PCC the program participants will be fully equipped with the following foundation for a successful long-term career: 

  • Approximately 1,800 hours of on-the-job training
  • An Associate Degree 
  • And many times a full-time job offer from a business in a high-paying industry.

FAME has an excellent track record as a path to high-quality jobs. Nationally, FAME has a placement success rate of over 85%.

How Will It Help Pueblo?

To sum it up, FAME Pueblo offers many benefits to the local community. Our goal is to improve local economic mobility, allowing students to learn sought-after skills, gain hands-on employment experience while earning a degree. Not only does it give students an excellent clear path to financial security and success, but it also solves the workforce gap many local businesses are experiencing. Ultimately, we hope this attracts new students and employees to these careers.

Many of our local businesses worry about the aging workforce. Ted Harvey, plant manager of Trane in Pueblo told PCC that 30% of his company’s employees have been working here for over 20 years. So in the coming years, without a concerted effort to train and add new employees to the local plants, businesses will not have the staff needed. “A lot of people are retiring and that’s a big void to fill,” he said.

The Future of Colorado

We hope FAME Pueblo equips the local community with the skilled workforce required to grow strong, local businesses. We see FAME Pueblo as an investment in our community’s future success. Not only does the program give college students an opportunity for career growth, but the program also extends its reach to K-12 students, giving them exposure to the careers that can be attainable by them in the near future. Currently, FAME is open to all high school students and high school graduates or those with a GED. PCC will actively work to identify potential high school seniors who could become candidates for FAME.

Students that are interested in being considered for an interview can apply here. For more information, students and businesses that are interested in participating in the Pueblo, Colorado area can contact Jason Falsetto at:719-549-3119 or email jason.falsetto@pueblocc.edu for more information.