The Erie Regional Manufacturer Partnership (ERMP) is addressing an issue facing many local companies in Erie…the ability to find talent, especially for entry-level positions. The WorkAdvance Program seeks to address this gap by coupling short-term foundational workplace and technical skills training with employment, career coaching, and on-the-job training to ensure a pipeline of workers for entry-level positions who can enter into and advance along manufacturing career pathways. Modern Industries, PHB Corporation, ISM, Machining Concepts, and Erie Press Systems are hiring companies participating in ERMP’s WorkAdvance program, but you don’t have to be an ERMP member to participate.

The goal of WorkAdvance is to recruit and enroll three cohorts of participants for potential hiring by participating companies. The program will ease the hiring process for manufacturers, providing a stronger pipeline of workers. The training will front-load the fundamentals, including Workplace Skills, Safety, and Shop Math for two weeks (no cost to participant or employer). From there, technical classes will be structured to enable participants to work in paid internships while continuing to attend training.

WorkAdvance is a valuable program for manufacturing companies and also a great opportunity for those interested in starting a career in manufacturing. Whether a recent high-school graduate or someone working in another industry with few opportunities for advancement, the program is structured to support the success of the selected candidates.

Employers Timeline for Participation and Candidate Selection:

  • Confirm desire to participate by contacting ERMP Project Manager
  • Deadline for the 1st Cohort is Monday, July 29th, however, also taking commitments now for future cohorts
  • Participate in Recruitment Fair on Thursday, August 1st at 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
  • ERMP Project Team will prescreen candidates following the recruitment fair
  • Employers will interview and select pool of candidates to be placed in the program

Candidate Technical Training and Internship Timeline:

  • GECAC Career Readiness Training – 2 weeks / 60 hours of training, paid at $11.00/hour (paid by the program)
  • Northern Pennsylvania Regional College Technical Training – 3 weeks / 100 hours of training, paid at $11.00 /hr by employer
  • Internship with participating employers – 3 weeks / 120 hours of training, paid at $11.00 / hr by employer
  • Full-time Employment – New hire pay increased to $13.00 – $17.00 /hr by employer

Manufacturers interested in participating should contact Megan Wagner Ingram via email at

Click here if you are interested in a job in manufacturing  and want to attend the August 1st Info Session event to learn more about WorkAdvance.