The Partnerships in Industry and Education Innovation Center in Cleveland opened for first event
The Partnerships in Industry and Education Innovation (PIE) Center in Cleveland hosted its first event Thursday afternoon.
The Smart Solutions for Smart Factories Expo held by the PIE Center gave a look into the type of innovative tech that PIE center students may be learning.
The center is a planned workforce development center that will allow juniors and seniors enrolled in Bradley County schools as well as Polk County Schools (with plans of expansion to Meigs, McMinn, and North Hamilton County Schools) to receive training in a variety of career fields. The center will collaborate with the STEM industry for skill development.
“And so all of our tenants and then of course our core, which is our STEM center, will train students to work in the pipeline in manufacturing and healthcare and production. We have 26 programs to study in Bradley County Schools, and the center will hit and touch all of those, ” said PIE Center Director Brittany Cannon.
Tennessee’s Commissioner for the Department of Workforce and labor development, Jeff McCord said it is centers like this one that will help address the problem in the workforce we’ve had in Tennessee since even before the pandemic.
“People don’t have the skills necessary to do the current jobs. Now, we kind of discouraged, even disparaged those kinds of technical careers for a generation. After the pandemic, what we’re seeing tremendously is not just a skills gap, but a people gap. I think it’s important to know that there are more people employed in Tennessee than ever in the history of Tennessee,” said Commissioner McCord.
U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn was also in-attendance. After touring the center Blackburn said this will serve as a career stepping stone for the whole region.
“I am so happy to be here in Bradley County, and to really celebrate the opening of the PIE Center,” said Blackburn. “You know, this is where so many people, not only Bradley county, but the entire region are going to come and get the skills they need not only for a job but for a career.”
The center is set to be completed by October 14th. However, classes have already officially begun. Learn more at bcspie.org