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Wood Manufacturing Skill Certification program set for Saturday at Pinkerton

By Hunter McGee
Union Leader Correspondent

May 08. 2014 11:52PM

DERRY — Helping promote certification in skills required by the advanced wood manufacturing industry is the goal of a recently launched program for educators.

On Saturday at Pinkerton Academy, woodworking and building trades instructors from throughout New Hampshire will get a chance to learn about the new program during a hands-on training session. The session is scheduled to run from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Thousands of people are employed in the secondary wood products industry in New Hampshire, said Collin Miller, director of wood products initiatives at the Northern Forest Center.

But the industry could be facing a future shortage of qualified workers, Miller said in a recent news release

“Many U.S. manufacturing sectors, including wood products, are projecting a skills gap in the coming years,” Miller said. “They expect to have more openings than qualified workers ready to fill them. This program follows similar trade-certification efforts in other industries designed to retain and expand a skilled workforce to compete in the 21st century.”

The Northern Forest Center is teaming up with the Woodwork Career Alliance to offer the program, Miller said.

Instructors who complete the training session on Saturday will qualify for six hours of continuing education credit toward annual teacher recertification.

The goal of the session is to introduce the program and explain how educators can integrate it into their curriculum, Miller said. Through hands-on simulation, the session will train educators to assess student progress on industry-approved performance standards.

The partnership is now working with high school and technical education programs and at the college-level to help identify the skills required in the region’s woodworking industry.

“A career in modern woodworking requires skills as basic as reading a tape measure and as advanced as programming automated CNC (computer-numerically-controlled) routers, and everything in between,” Miller said.

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