New Hampshire Manufacturing Extension Partnership: NH MEP
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May 21, 2007

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

NH MEP, Keene Office of Employment Security and Local Companies
Team Up to Train and Hire NH Workers with M.O.S.T. Mobile Training Unit

Keene, NH - When you’re out of a job, all you can think about is how you’ll make a living. When you’re a manufacturing company with a shortage of skilled workers, you wonder how you’ll ever get your projects done. The New Hampshire Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NH MEP) understands this problem well, and by partnering with the Keene Office of Employment Security, they are helping solve it.

When the M.O.S.T. (Machine Operator Skills Training) mobile training unit arrives at the Keene Office of Employment Security on May 21, ten local out-of-work men and women will be trained in order to secure highly skilled, computerized manufacturing jobs with three New Hampshire companies.

M.O.S.T. is a U.S. Department of Labor pilot program launched in the six (6) New England states and helps local manufacturers fill a rapidly increasing number of vacant Computerized Numerical Control (CNC) machine operator positions. The mobile training unit, equipped with computer terminals and interactive machines, will be in Keene for two weeks as trainees are fast-tracked into new careers.

“In only two weeks, the M.O.S.T. program will give these ten individuals a chance to be trained and land a good job with a New Hampshire company,” says Joel Slutsky, manager of the Keene Employment Security Office. “This is a fantastic vehicle, quite literally, to teach people skills that are in-demand for New Hampshire’s manufacturing community.”

The leadership team at Tidland Corporation agrees.

“We have open positions for 7 of the 10 trainees,” says Victor Kissell, Operations Manager at Tidland. “We have vacancies we need to fill, and when we were contacted by the NH MEP to be a part of M.O.S.T., it was a perfect fit.” 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.

Val Zanchuk, president of Graphicast, is also enthusiastic about partnering with M.O.S.T. Located in Jaffrey, Graphicast is the preeminent company in the field of developing and using graphite mold casting technology to produce precision metal parts for use in products like computers, video imaging equipment and speaker components.

“Graphicast is proud to be a part of the M.O.S.T. program,” says Zanchuk. “We have had the benefit of working with the N.H. MEP on lean manufacturing training in the past, and I think it’s great that they’re supporting M.O.S.T. By doing that, they’re supporting us.”

“There is an industry-wide shortage of the skilled workers we need to keep our plants running smoothly,” adds Steve Dalessio, General Manager at Lake Machine, the third company participating in the program and offering a position for trainees. Lake Machine, located in Claremont, provides the instrument, medical, sensor, aero-space, electronic and defense industries with quality parts and assemblies. “M.O.S.T. is providing us with the workers we need, and at the same time, helping our neighbors that are out-of-work get back on their feet. It’s a win-win situation.”

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.

“I want to thank all organizations involved in making M.O.S.T. happen in Keene,” says Zenagui Brahim, Director of Operations at NH MEP. “Our next M.O.S.T. training is slated for July in Lebanon, and we’re excited to bring the same results and success to that manufacturing community.”

The NH MEP is currently working with the Claremont Office of Employment Security and the N.H. Community Technical College in Claremont to recruit manufacturing organizations and trainees for the July session, as well as facilitate further training and certification post-training. For more information on this session, interested parties can call Zenagui Brahim at 603-226-3200.

The NHMEP 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.