A new £12.5m centre in Wolverhampton has been opened to boost high value, advanced manufacturing in the region.
The Black Country Elite Centre for Manufacturing Skills (ECMS) will aim to link education and higher education with local, regional and national employers.
ECMS is a collaboration between the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership, University of Wolverhampton, Dudley College, Cast Metals Federation, Confederation of British Metalforming, Institute of Cast Metals Engineers and In-Comm Training.
The new scheme is based on a hub and spoke model, with dedicated training centres now operating across the Black Country in collaboration with training providers and professional industry.
Based at the University of Wolverhampton’s £100m regeneration project at the former Springfield Brewery, the ECMS hub is an employer-led training facility for the Black Country which has been designed to build on the region’s industrial background by providing specialist training, short courses and apprenticeships.
The ECMS hub aims to upskill current and future employees, and train new apprentices in metal forming, helping to close skills gaps identified by employers.
Apprentices learn on the job at one of the ECMS’s training hub or spokes, which are equipped with new training rooms, metallurgy and metrology labs.
Courses have been developed in casting, tool making, pattern making, metal forming and foundry training, as well as mechatronics, product design and development, and advanced computer numerical control.
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