Workforce Development


Polaris MEP and The Phoenix Partnership Bring 21st Century Lean to Rhode Island

New Breakfast Series, Manufacturing Essentials Course and Executive Level Training for Manufacturers Offered

PROVIDENCE, RI – Polaris MEP (Manufacturing Extension Partnership) and the award-winning Phoenix Partnership will be providing local manufacturers with 21st Century Lean training in the coming months. The two organizations share a common purpose that is to help Rhode Island manufacturers become more efficient and profitable through continuous improvement and lean manufacturing methodologies. Read more


The Steel Yard Hosts Weld to Work Program

From May 1st through the 26th the Steel Yard ( will be hosting its 150-hour Weld to Work job training program. Weld to Work is the Steel Yard’s unique answer to a shortage of affordable and accessible vocational training and Rhode Island manufacturers’ hiring needs. It pays participants to learn to weld and fabricate by working on real contracts of artistic functional pieces, such as ornate fences, bike racks and trashcans. Participants either receive 30-hours or 150-hours of intensive training in which they learn to safely use all the tools common to a welding shop.

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Call for Exhibitors – 2017 Rhode Island Robot Block Party

 Is your company on the forefront of automation with robots? Or do you manufacture robots? The Rhode Island Robot Block Party, a free community event, is accepting applications to exhibit at the Sunday, April 30, 2017 expo at the Pizzitola Center at Brown University. Read more


Guest Speaker’s Wanted – URI Office of Veteran’s Affairs

Our friends at the URI Business Engagement Center made us aware of an opportunity for Rhode Island manufacturers.  The University of Rhode Island Office of Veteran’s Affairs is seeking guest speakers from the New England manufacturing community to help their student veteran population in their transition from active duty to the civilian academic community. Read more


Small Business Education Program with Staggering Results – Apply Now

gs1000sbGoldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses at CCRI is a no-cost 12-week program that helps small businesses grow through a practical business education, access to capital, and a support network of advisers and peers.

Over 7,000 small business owners have participated nationwide and in the U.K., and the program continues to expand. The Rhode Island program launched in March 2016 and is hosted at the Community College of Rhode Island.

With a 99% graduation rate, business owner participants are translating the knowledge they gain from the program into increased revenue and job growth — within just six months of graduating, 64% of participants have increased their revenues, and 45% have created new jobs.

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SENEDIA IT/Cybersecurity Internship Program

The Southeastern New England Defense Industry AllianceExciting Opportunity from our friends at SENEDIA:

SENEDIA is continuing to offer an exciting opportunity for Rhode Island college and university students and companies alike: an IT /Cybersecurity Internship Program to provide experiential learning opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students studying information technology or cybersecurity.

SENEDIA has 16 intern slots available for the 2016/2017 Fall and Spring semesters, and both intern candidates and companies will be selected on a first-come first-served basis. 

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Rhode Island Manufacturing Boot Camp Launched to Fill Skills Gap at Local Companies

No cost program created to provide RI manufacturers with newly trained workforce

PRhode Island Manufacturing Boot Camp PartnersROVIDENCE, RI – Polaris MEP (Manufacturing Extension Partnership), a division of the University of Rhode Island Research Foundation, has joined forces with Rhode Island Manufacturers Association (RIMA) and Workforce Performance Solutions (WPS Training) to deliver the Rhode Island Manufacturing Boot Camp. As part of RIDLT’s Real Jobs Rhode Island initiative, the program is designed to provide qualified entry-level candidates to hiring manufacturing companies as soon as possible.

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Introducing the Rhode Island Manufacturing Boot Camp

The Rhode Island Manufacturing Boot Camp, provided by Polaris MEP, Rhode Island Manufacturers Association (RIMA) and Workforce Performance Solutions (WPS), is designed to provide qualified entry level candidates to hiring manufacturing companies as soon as possible.  Learn more


Challenge Forecasting for Very Small Manufacturers

Recently there has been an increasing appetite for information and results around working with the smallest manufacturers. Not just the generally defined small manufacturer with under 500 employees, but the very small manufacturers with under 20 employees. MEP is focusing more on serving the very small manufacturer, but to do so we need more information. How do you define these very small manufacturers? What support do they need? Is it different from the needs of the regular small and medium manufacturing base? These questions are important to define if we are going to increase our positive impact with this select group. Read more