AJAC mas http://ajactraining.org/

Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Committee Newsletter
Spring 2012

Working with employers to create apprenticeship programs to develop the next generation of highly skilled aerospace and advanced manufacturing workers for Washington State.ate.  

In This Issue
AJAC's Executive Director Receives Women of Valor Award
Video: AJAC's Mobile Training Unit Offers Just-in-Time Training to Employers
Video: Get an ROI on Employee Training with AJAC
35 Workers to Receive Training and Education with the New Pathway Through Apprenticeship Project
AJAC is Looking for Machining and Aircraft Mechanic Instructors!
AJAC Events
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AJAC's Executive Director Receives Women of Valor Award

On February 22, 2012, Senator Maria Cantwell presented AJAC's Executive Director, Laura Hopkins, with the 2012 Women of Valor Award.


The Women of Valor award was given to Hopkins for her innovation and growth in the aerospace industry. Since establishing AJAC in 2008, Hopkins has partnered with employers and community and technical colleges to develop apprenticeship programs throughout Washington State. Through apprenticeship there is a transfer of knowledge and skill between retiring and new advanced manufacturing tradespeople that is crucial in keeping Washington State competitive in the aerospace and advanced manufacturing trades.


Seven other women also received the Women of Valor award and were honored for dedicating their lives to investing in jobs and our communities in Washington State. These women included Jean Chamberlin, Maureen Dougherty, Lisa Brummel, Ginny Gilder, Dawn Trudeau, Lisa Cohen, and Liz Dunn. These women helped support job creation in aerospace, biotechnology and biomedical fields and culture and entertainment.


This was the fifth year Cantwell gave out Women of Valor awards recognizing outstanding women in our state. In 2006, Hilary Clinton partnered with Cantwell to kick off the first Women of Valor award ceremony by helping to present the awards.   


The event took place at the Sheraton Hotel in Seattle. Special guests included U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer, U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu, U.S. Senator Patty Murray and U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen.



AJAC's Mobile Training Unit Offers Just-in-Time Training to Employers  

Advanced Inspection and Manufacturing Mobile Training Unit (AIM-MTU)

Check out how aerospace and manufacturing employers can train 

their employees without stopping production on the shop floor with AJAC's Advanced Inspection and Manufacturing Mobile Training Unit (AIM-MTU). The AIM-MTU is a 53 foot classroom on wheels that offers state-of-the-art equipment combing training in engineering and production. The AIM-MTU travels to work sites across Washington State allowing employers to provide just-in-time training that fits their needs and is on their schedule.  


To sign your company up for customized training on the AIM-MTU, e-mail aim-mtu@ajactraining.org or call 206-764-7940.   


AJAC's Advanced Inspection and Manufacturing Mobile Training Unit (AIM-MTU)








             AIM-MTU Sponsorship

           Opportunities Available!


Sponsorship packages include a number of ways for your organization to gain exposure, such as:

  • Logo placement on:
    • The 53' AIM-MTU trailer
    • AIM-MTU marketing materials and web site
  • Invitation to events
  • Cross marketing opportunities 
  • Plus more!

To find out how you can become an AIM-MTU sponsor and get increased exposure for your company check out our sponsorship packages or contact Megan Fiess at 206-388-9336 or  AIM-MTU@ajactraining.org



Get an ROI on Employee Training with AJAC 

Get an ROI on Employee Training with the Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Committee (AJAC)

Listen to local aerospace and manufacturing employers discuss apprenticeship and the return on investment (ROI) they have received since participating in the AJAC apprenticeship program. With the AJAC program, an employer can capture the knowledge and skills of their best workers and pass it on to a new generation of employees, creating  a loyal and reliable multi-skilled workforce. 


 Your Small Business Can Receive Up to $5,000 for Your Exporting Needs!

Qualifying Washington state companies can apply for export finance assistance under a new program from the State of Washington Department of Commerce. The Export Voucher program, funded in part through a grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration, provides export-ready companies with
the opportunity to apply for an export voucher worth
up to $5,000 to help them begin exporting or expand to new export markets. Vouchers can be used to help pay for trade show fees and travel, interpreter fees, translation services, training, international certification and other expenses.     


**Eligibility requirements apply, as well as a 25% company match of up to $1,667. For more information, contact Danielle Ellingston, Business Development Manager, at danielle.ellingston@commerce.wa.gov or 206-256-6143.  


 Applications will be accepted through August 15.  

Visit the Commerce website for more details.  


35 Workers to Receive Training and Education with the New Pathway Through Apprenticeship Project


In January, AJAC and South Seattle Community College (SSCC) were awarded the Workplace-Based Learning Initiative funded by the U.S. Department of Labor through the Washington State Workforce Training Board.  


With this 18 month grant, AJAC and SSCC have created the Pathway Through Apprenticeship Project which allows AJAC and SSCC to expand education and training to:

  • Prepare 10 low skill workers, who are either without a GED or have low math skills to enter the AJAC apprenticeship program and advance at their companies
  • Reduce the time for 25 first and second year machining apprentices to complete a two year degree that leads to four year degree educational pathway including technical education instruction, engineering and management

Through the program students have access to online classes, prior learning assessments, and on the job training that will prepare them for apprenticeship and give them the tools needed to successfully earn their journey-level certificate. Employees will have the opportunity to:

  • Take GED+ classes, which allows someone to properly prepare for the GED
  • Take assessment preparation mathematics allowing a student to qualify for an AJAC apprenticeship
  • Develop a portfolio of prior learning (Prior Learning Assessment) that can fulfill humanities credit towards their associates degree and allows for students to showcase their knowledge and skills they have developed
  • Receive formal on-the-job training based on an OJT template that will be available statewide and found at employer and apprenticeship sites

One way AJAC will help educate and train these adults is by using the Advanced Inspection Mobile Training Unit (AIM-MTU) - a 53' classroom on wheels equipped with specialized state-of-the-art manufacturing and inspection equipment. On the AIM-MTU, students will kick off their Prior Learning Assessment with an online learning orientation ensuring successful completion and utilization of online resources. Math students will also have opportunity for in-person instruction, online learning, and working on lab projects. The AIM-MTU allows for an easy and convenient way to educate students without reducing employer production time.


The Pathway Through Apprenticeship Project creates a learning environment ideal for industrial workplaces and advanced manufacturing employees. It makes it possible for adults seeking higher education to access learning opportunities and training. It gives current and potential participants in the AJAC program a chance to learn and become successful in aerospace and advanced manufacturing.



AJAC is Looking for Machining and Aircraft Mechanic Instructors!  

Share Your Knowldege and Skills with the Next Generation!


The Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Committee (AJAC) is currently recruiting:
  • Experienced MACHINISTS to teach Aircraft-Oriented Machining and/or Precision Metal Fabricator classes
  • Experienced AIRCRAFT MECHANIC to teach airframe and/or composite classes.  
  • Experienced people to teach specialty trainings, such as print reading, GD&T trainings, and short-term basic manufacturing training.

Training opportunities are available in the following counties and areas:

  • King
  • Pierce
  • Snohomish
  • Spokane
  • Tri-Cities
  • Yakima
  • White Salmon 


  • Journey-level machinist or equivalent required
  • A&P Mechanic
  • Composite Technician or Specialist  
  • At least five years experience as a machinist, a&p mechanic or in advanced manufacturing preferred
  • Prior teaching or mentoring experience preferred 

Benefits include:

  • Competitive pay
  • Part-time/evening hours
  • Instructor training  
  • Opportunity to become an even more valuable resource to your industry


If you are interested in passing on your machining knowledge to the next generation while earning extra income or know someone who is, e-mail your resume and cover letter to instructors@ajactraining.org.


AJAC Events Calendar

May 10, 2012

Clover Park Technical College Career Conference
Clover Park Technical College- Lakewood, WA  


May 10-11, 2012

Joint Base Lewis McChord Job Fair
Camp Murray, WA
More Information 


May 11, 2012 

33rd Annual Washington Women in Trades - Career Fair
Fisher Pavilion at Seattle Center -Seattle, WA
What AJAC Apprentices Are Saying:
CNC Machinist

"...AJAC's program helped me turn my job into a career..."  Brian Helmbrecht - Machining Center Technician


"...Because of this program, I now have a career, not just a job.  I'm learning skills I can use throughout my life that will help me stay competitive in my industry and make me an asset to my company..."  Miley Johnson - Sheet Metal Technician -Orion


 "...My initiative to participate in the program earned me an immediate promotion to part-time CNC programmer and draftsman, allowing me to expand my current knowledge in machining...My career has become more of a hobby to me than work."             Anthony Green - Machinist/Programming Apprentice
Exact Aerospace  


"The skills I've gained in the AJAC program through manufacturing basics and lean manufacturing has helped me improve my efficiency and problem solving abilities during production..."                  Dan Porter - Machinist  Seattle Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc.   


What AJAC Employers Are Saying:
ANEW Trades Rotation Program AJAC

"...The value this program will bring us is long-term retention of well qualified, trained and certified employees..."
Jeff Tomson -  Engineer/Marketing   Machinist, Inc.    


"...This program can take someone with basic skills, and turn him or her into an invaluable employee and a vital asset to our company. As we expand and grow as a company, this program should also help us attract better qualified entry level candidates."                           Kerry Prewett - President
 TK Machine Co.  


 "Our Production Manager stated that this group of graduates has raised the bar. The quality of these three graduating machinists is superior to what we've experienced in the past."                    Janie Pierce, Director of Human Resource- Precision Machine Works, Inc.    

"The value I believe the AJAC apprenticeship program provides to Damar AeroSystems is the ability to upgrade the skills of our workforce and therefore create better educated and trained employees..."   

Sharon Black - Human Resources Manager  -Damar AeroSystems    

Quick Links
The AJAC Mission:

AJAC's Mission is to provide exceptional and responsive apprenticeships, innovative supporting signature training programs with cutting edge curriculum and highly effective trades trainers.   

AJAC offers a method for transferring the breadth and depth of knowledge and skills between generations of the workforce, thus promoting the value of contributing to the next generation. 

AJAC brings about a significant and lasting impact on the prosperity of Washington State, empowering its diverse population of residents to thrive as craftspeople and attain secure family wage jobs through: 

  • Dynamic career and educational pathways
  • Corresponding wrap around support services
  • Smooth pipelines connecting employers with the next generation of workers and  where preschool and K-12 students and their influencers see aerospace opportunities as viable career path options
  • Advocating for recognition and financial support of training in aerospace and manufacturing
  • Expanding the diversity of people entering the trades
  • Exploring opportunities for growth and collaborating with partners to form comprehensive solutions