Please welcome our newest Manufacturing Academy instructor, Stephen Matczak! In 2010, Stephen completed his machining degree at Perry Technical Institute in Yakima, Washington and in 2013 became one of the AJAC instructors for the Machining Apprenticeship at Yakima Valley College.
As the Maintenance Manager for JELD-WEN (Yakima) he found his passion for Industrial Maintenance and blended his love of teaching with his job and cross trained his team in machining and electronics troubleshooting
Stephen currently instructs AJAC’s new Manufacturing Academy pre-apprenticeship program in Yakima. This new 11-week program will help job seekers in Yakima County develop skills and certifications for the region’s industrial maintenance and food processing industries
If you could choose anyone, who would you pick as your mentor?
My parents divorced when I was 8 and my father moved back to Philadelphia. We would spend the summers there visiting family and going to a lot of Phillies games. My dad passed away in 2017 and he is certainly the reason I became a machinist however, I never had to opportunity to learn from him what he knew about machining. I would chose my father, Joe Matczak, as my mentor.
What is your favorite part about working in the non-profit industry?
What excites me most about being part of this organization is the ability to pass on the knowledge I have gained in the fields of electronics, maintenance and machining.
What’s the #1 most played song on your iPod/iTunes/Spotify?
I listen to three types of music: Bluegrass, Reggae and Punk. My go to song is The Exploited – Punk’s Not Dead.
What’s one thing about you that would surprise me?
I am a cake decorator. From birthdays to weddings and everything in between. I love baking too.
What was your dream job growing up?
I wanted to be an architect.
As a statewide, nonprofit 501(c)(3) aerospace and advanced manufacturing registered apprenticeship organization, AJAC raises public and private resources through grants and contracts on behalf of our mission to develop, implement and increase access to registered apprenticeships. AJAC is excited to announce the following new grants and partnerships which will expand apprenticeship and training opportunities to diverse populations and underserved communities across Washington State.
Ballmer Group: AJAC was awarded a three year, $750,000 grant to support a new position at AJAC to engage directly with the Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC) and financial aid offices at community and technical colleges across Washington State to connect AJAC apprentices and pre-apprentices to new public financial aid resources such as the Washington College Grant and the Washington State Opportunity Scholarship.
Career Launch Endorsement: AJAC recently enhanced its Manufacturing Academy apprenticeship preparation program to include a 3-month paid On-the-Job Training experience for out-of-school and opportunity youth, ages 16-29. In June, the State Board of Community and Technical Colleges endorsed this enhanced Advanced Manufacturing Academy (AMA) as a new Career Launch program, which will increase AJAC’s ability to partner with schools, colleges and workforce development councils across Washington State to better connect youth people to aerospace and advanced manufacturing apprenticeship pathways.
Career Connect Washington Intermediary Round 4: AJAC was awarded a one year, $250,000 grant to support the statewide expansion of the AMA Career Launch program, specifically targeting King, Pierce, Spokane and Yakima counties. Grant resources will enhance AJAC’s ability to partner with Regional CCW Networks in each of those counties in order to expand access to manufacturing apprenticeship pathways for opportunity youth.
City of Kent – CARES Act & Port of Seattle: AJAC received two grants from the City of Kent to launch a new Manufacturing Employee Retention Program for Kent-based manufacturing companies who have been negatively impacted by COVID-19. The two grants, which include federal Department of Commerce CARES Act and local Port of Seattle resources, provides up to $2,200 in employee wage reimbursements to help ensure that eligible companies can remain competitive and employees receive training in safe work conditions while offering incentives to retain existing entry-level workers, hire new workers, and/or rehire those who were furloughed.
Division of Vocational Rehabilitation: AJAC entered into a new contract with the Department of Social and Human Services’ Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) to serve youth between the ages of 16-21 with Individualized Education or 504 Plans, or other documented disabilities, in AJAC pre-apprenticeship and AMA Career Launch programs. Through this contract, AJAC plans to serve up to 125 DVR-eligible youth over a 2-year period in Work Readiness Training, Work-Based Learning, and paid Internships at partnering manufacturing companies.
New Lost-Cost, Short-Term Trainings From AJAC
AJAC is excited to announce this July we will offer three consecutive short-term trainings at our Advanced Manufacturing Prep Training Center in Kent, Washington.
These training’s are designed for current manufacturers to grow and expand their skill set in a variety of key areas utilizing curriculum developed by AJAC’s subject matter experts and delivered by industry professionals.
Our Schedule of Trainings:
- Basic Inspection Hand Tools (July 14-16)
- Basic Engineering Drawings (July 21-28)
- Geometric Dimension & Tolerancing (July 30-August 13)
Each training will take place on Tuesdays & Thursdays from 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. AJAC’s apprenticeship employers will receive a discount for each student enrolled.
For more information, please visit our Advanced Manufacturing Prep Website.
AJAC hosted two Youth Apprenticeship Webinars to better connect students, parents, and counselors with our next cohorts kicking off Summer 2020.
During the webinars we discuss the following: program benefits, on-the-job training, related supplemental instruction, updated timelines, expectations, the hiring process, and how to apply.
Automation Technician Webinar
Recorded on May 12, 2020
Production Technician Webinar
Recorded on May 14, 2020
Nathan Hall, a Tool & Die Maker Apprentice at SEA-LECT Plastics in Everett, Washington was tasked to help combat the spread of COVID-19 by creating a custom injection molded face mask for front-line healthcare workers in Washington State.
The face mask, or commonly known as the Montana Mask, was a collaborative project between different manufactures who came together and leveraged their individual manufacturing capabilities to mass produce face masks.
Nathan, who is in his fourth year of the apprenticeship, worked with his mentor Rob and engineering department to create a custom mold for two different sized face masks in one week. A challenge that Nathan took head on.
To purchase a Montana Mask, please visit: https://sealectplastics.com/montana-mask/.