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Friday, May 24, 2024

Lake Technical College awarded $1.8 million for manufacturing expansion

Lake Technical College announced Friday that it has been awarded a significant grant for semiconductor and advanced manufacturing expansion.

This grant, which came from Gov. Ron DeSantis through the Florida Job Growth Grant fund, will provide $1.8 million in funding to support the college’s ambitious plans for growth and innovation.

“We are incredibly honored to receive this grant award,” said DeAnna Thomas, executive director at Lake Technical College. “This funding will enable us to invest in state-of-the-art equipment, expand our access and service to more students, and produce highly skilled graduates to support the current and future employment demands in manufacturing. We are thrilled to participate in strengthening Florida’s semiconductor manufacturing industry and enhancing its workforce.”

The grant award recognized Lake Tech’s commitment to the highest quality training in the manufacturing sector and reinforced the college’s mission to be an integral component of economic growth and development in the community. With this funding, Lake Tech aims to further enhance program offerings in semiconductor manufacturing and logistics with innovative instruction that will continue to support manufacturing workforce needs in the region.

“We’re so proud to have such a prestigious institution in our backyard,” said Commissioner Kirby Smith, chairman of the Lake County Board of County Commissioners. “We anticipate this grant and the resulting enhancements will greatly support residents seeking a career in a critical industry. We look forward to seeing how Lake Technical College can amplify the semiconductor manufacturing industry in our region.”

This investment and project will focus on several key areas, including:

  1. Program expansion: Lake Tech will leverage the grant funding to expand its existing Computer Numeric Controlled Production Specialist program which is currently full with a waiting list for the spring term. This project will increase the number of students trained yearly by at least 50%.
  2. New complimentary program: The grant will support an Advanced Manufacturing Program to begin in Spring 2024 that will become part of the manufacturing pathway for students. This program will prepare manufacturing students with additional high-demand skills needed in the field of semiconductors and advanced manufacturing while utilizing robotics and global logistics tracks focused on these industries.
  3. Workforce Development: Lake Tech recognizes the importance of a skilled workforce in driving advanced manufacturing and ultimately economic growth. Along with expanded and new training programs, this grant will provide scholarships and assist in developing new partnerships to create a more robust pipeline of highly skilled professionals in the field. The grant award for the semiconductor and advanced manufacturing expansion represents a significant milestone for Lake Technical College. The Center for Advanced Manufacturing was completed in 2018, and this expansion underscores the college’s dedication to innovation, growth and its vision to shape the future of Florida’s workforce.

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