Lots of good-paying manufacturing jobs are still available in Northwestern Pennsylvania, but local companies are having trouble finding trained people to fill them.

McDowell High School in Millcreek is stepping forward to help.   It's planning to open the McDowell Manufacturing Academy. The academy is set to open at the beginning of the next academic year. 

McDowell groomed the curriculum to meet the needs of local manufacturers. The machines located at the academy are the same machines found at those companies.

Besides working with area industries, the McDowell Manufacturing Academy is also working with Edinboro University.  A student can arrange dual enrollment while in high school to obtain a quality assurance technician certificate.  That certificate can insure a good living wage upon graduation.

"The average salary for this quality assurance technician certificate is around $43,000. So you get on the job training without any college debt,” says Scott Boyd, McDowell Guidance Counselor.


Local manufacturing companies such as Modern Industries, Reddog Industries, The Plastek Group, and Plasticos, Incorporated are all partners in the academy.