A new program at Clark College is giving students an opportunity to get a degree while getting hands-on experience in the workforce. The program is called Manufacturing Career Launch and students spend two years getting part-time pay and experience at SEH America (silicon wafer manufacturer).
This program is unique in a time where the economy doesn’t support many high paying jobs without additional training, certifications, or degrees. Each year, only one-third of students who start high school will obtain further education. The STEM Network is offering a solution to those students that are cost-effective, sustainable, and uses existing systems.
The first round of students for this program have started and are working part-time in various departments at SEH America. They are learning things like how to use various pieces of equipment and how to process silicon. In two years when the program ends, students will be able to take full-time positions at SEH and have their associates degree in hand. Current student, Devon Lavern said, “It has given me a reliable plan for the beginning of my adult life where I had no idea what I was going to do before.”
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Per the U.S. Department of Commerce Economics and Statistics Administration, STEM-based jobs are increasing faster than traditional jobs. This makes these STEM programs that much more important to our local job market. Students are able to not just have a job, but rather have a career right out of school.
SEH America is new to the SW Washington STEM Network. The program benefits them as they will most likely have some longtime employees retiring soon. These jobs can easily be filled by up and coming students from the STEM Program. It is a win-win for all.
For more information about the SW Washington STEM Network, visit them online.