New Hampshire Manufacturing Extension Partnership: NH MEP
New Hampshire MEP Home | News Releases

Click here for a printer-friendly version

July 19, 2007

For more information please contact:
Zenagui Brahim
Tel: (603) 226-3200

NH MEP, Keene Office of Employment Security and Local Companies Team Up Again to Train and Hire New Hampshire Workers

Keene, NH - There is a critical need for qualified machine operators in the manufacturing industry, especially at shops in New Hampshire and New England. Due to the limited number of people entering training programs, manufacturers are having difficulty finding workers with the necessary skills and knowledge. But the New Hampshire Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NH MEP) and the Keene Office of Employment Security are helping to change that.

The Machine Operator Skills Training Program (M.O.S.T.) is a free regional program that brings state of the art technology to rural areas using a mobile training unit. The 80-hour hands-on program is designed to equip workers with the skills necessary to secure positions as machine operators in companies like the Tidland Corporation in Keene, New Hampshire Industries in Lebanon and Lake Machine in Claremont. The six New England divisions of the Manufacturing Extension Partnership run the M.O.S.T. program, which is funded by a grant from the Department of Labor.

The mobile training unit, equipped with computer terminals and interactive machines, will arrive on the property of Tidland Corporation on Monday, July 23rd and stay for two weeks through Friday, August 3rd. This is the second program of this kind for Tidland in the past three months.

“We were very pleased with the candidates trained in the first round in May at the Keene Office of Employment Security that we wanted to sponsor a second group at Tidland,” said Sharon Mills at Tidland Corporation. “We will be interviewing for ten machine operators. In just two weeks, the M.O.S.T. program will give these individuals the training they need to prepare them for work here.” With a plant in Keene, Tidland is an international company that manufactures a range of equipment for slitting and winding paper, plastic film, metal foils, and non-woven materials.

“Skilled computer numerically-controlled (CNC) machine operators are in high demand at manufacturing facilities in New Hampshire,” said Joel Slutsky, manager of the Keene Employment Security Office. “This program has been so successful because NH MEP is bringing the training facility to the company and the region that needs these workers most, eliminating the need for travel, which is a major benefit for the potential workers and the companies involved.”

Lake Machine, a shop that provides instrument, medical, sensor, aerospace, electronic and defense industries with quality parts and assemblies and New Hampshire Industries, a company specializing in stamped, turned, assembled, and welded products such as pulleys and sheaves, plan to interview for one opening at each of their facilities.

Upon completing the M.O.S.T. program, trainees will then attend a resume-writing and interviewing workshop, be interviewed by the three companies and then placed in a 60 day on-the-job training program, resulting in full-time employment.

“With the help of these organizations, I am confident M.O.S.T. will once again be a success in Keene,” says Zenagui Brahim, Director of Operations at NH MEP. “After their M.O.S.T. training, these new machine operators will be fast-tracked into their careers and will be positioned well to add to their skills and capabilities over time."

The NH MEP is an affiliate of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) under the U.S. Department of Commerce. The national MEP system is a network of manufacturing extension centers that provide business and technical assistance to smaller manufacturers in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Through MEP, manufacturers have access to more than 2,000 manufacturing and business “coaches” whose job is to help firms make changes that lead to greater productivity, increased profits and enhanced global competitiveness. For more information, please visit, or phone 1-800-MEP-4MFG.