MCC Hosts Focus Group for Manufacturers

(Bradenton, Fla., Sept. 13, 2006) - Manufacturing industry representatives from Sarasota and Manatee counties are invited to participate in a half-day focus group meeting Tuesday, Sept. 26, at the Manatee Community College (MCC) Center for Innovation and Technology at Lakewood Ranch, 7131 Professional Parkway East, Sarasota, Fla.

Focus group participants will explore and develop new training standards for Florida's high performance manufacturing workforce. Input gathered from focus groups will be used to develop entry-level and incumbent worker training curriculum that will be delivered free of charge.

The focus group is conducted in partnership with the newly established Florida Banner Center for Manufacturing, which was funded by a recent $500,000 Workforce Florida grant. The purpose of the Banner Center is to design relevant curriculum at community colleges for manufacturing employees.

Peter Straw, Sarasota Manatee Area Manufacturers Association (SAMA) executive director, is facilitating the focus group, which will allow educators to find out from manufacturers what they need in terms of employee skills and knowledge in the areas of production, quality, safety and maintenance.

To RSVP or for more information, call Straw at (941) 376-4272 or Idelia Phillips, MCC's director of career and technical education, at (941) 752-5219. Their respective e-mail addresses are and


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