Career Pathway Certificates Address Needs of Advanced Manufacturing

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Making a career change because of a shift in professional and personal interests, or enrolling in a program at Northeast Iowa Community College (NICC) to improve your employment future, are challenging decisions to make for any student at any age.

Career Pathway Certificate (CPC) programs are helping hundreds of community members make this decision more logical, sensible and simpler. From 2012 to 2014, more than 220 students completed CPC programs in Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Operator, Mechatronics Specialist and Welding (Basic and GMAW). After graduation, they progressed into better jobs with family-sustaining wages or enrolled in similar credit programs at NICC.

These CPC advanced manufacturing programs, as well as new Certified Production Technician  and Mechatronics options, are designed to meet local employers’ needs while supporting students to successfully complete. Students who want to enroll may qualify to earn a CPC at no cost if they meet all eligibility requirements.

Judi Tieman, who lives in southeastern Minnesota, took advantage of the career opportunity last spring. She enrolled in the Welding CPC program at the College’s Cresco Center to strengthen her résumé, which has benefited greatly with the addition of welding skills.

“I was in apprenticeships that promised welding training, but that never happened. Or, I would look for other colleges who had a welding program, yet it was offered once a year and I missed the chance to enroll – it was too hit or miss,” Tieman explained. “With the NICC Welding Career Pathway Certificate program at the Cresco Center, the timing was perfect.”

Tieman graduated from the program on June 24 and is confident the training will advance her career and education in the field.

“I was just so excited to get into the program. Whatever trade I’m in, the welding certificate enhances my skills – it’s an extremely valuable credential to be able to show to employers,” she said. “The new welding option at NICC is impressive and so are the people at the College who set up the program with Erin Powers Daley, Cresco Center director.”

For more information on CPC programs, visit!

Build your skills in Manchester

The Manchester Regional Education Partnership (MREP) center, which opened as a partnership between NICC, the City of Manchester and Upper Iowa University, is your local resource for workforce training, job skills classes and adult literacy programming.

Whether you need training in manufacturing, want to become a Certified Nurse Aid (CNA), take computer courses or something for fun, MREP offers a variety of classes close to home.

In its first year of operation in 2013, MREP enrolled 276 Business and Community Solutions students in 325 continuing education courses in everything from healthcare, to trades and industry, to personal interest. During the 2013-2014 school year, students from West Delaware, Edgewood-Colesburg and Maquoketa Valley high schools earned a combined 2,361.5 NICC credits and saved their families an estimated $1,321,968!

Dozens of Delaware County students also enrolled in Adult Education and Literacy programs, including English Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and high school equivalency diploma (HSED) classes.

If you who have not earned a high school diploma, the HSED provides the basic credential needed for nearly every advertised job opening. The HSED opens doors to further your education and is required to enroll in an NICC degree or Career Pathway Certificate program. MREP offers these services locally and affordably, and several grants for Manchester community members may cover HSED materials and testing fees.

MREP works with area businesses, including healthcare providers, to meet their hiring needs. Nursing homes and healthcare providers depend upon CNAs to provide important care for patients in our area, and employment openings for qualified CNAs are plentiful right now. Coursework through MREP can pave the way for your new healthcare career.

Community members in Manchester can achieve their educational goals through MREP, and the center works with local businesses to identify employment needs! For more information, contact Debra Kintzle, center director, at 563.822.1016 or

Search for Business and Community Solutions classes at!

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