Southern Cal Launches Material Handling Training Program

Southern California has started a three-year, $4.3 million U.S. Department of Labor training grant to upgrade and certify workforce skills in logistics. A group of community colleges began to deliver various courses this January to prepare both entry-level and incumbent workers in the advanced skills needed by the region to enhance its productivity and global competitiveness in material handling and logistics.

The centerpiece of this grant is the use of industry-led, national certifications for material handling workers provided by the nationwide Manufacturing Skill Standards Council (MSSC). The non-profit MSSC offers both a foundational-level Certified Logistics Associate (CLA) and mid-level technical Certified Logistics Technician (CLT) credential. These cover material handling workers in all supply chain facilities: warehouses, distribution centers, transporters, and production sites.

This grant is being implemented under a large regional consortium: the Southern California Logistics Technology Collaborative. The participating community colleges in the SCLTC are San Bernardino, Long Beach, East Los Angeles and Riverside. SCLTC also embraces eight workforce centers, five community organizations, and seven industry partners, including UPS, Port of Long Beach, Schneider Logistics and Hillwood Alliance CA.

Leo Reddy, CEO, MSSC states as follows: "Located around the country's two busiest container ports (Long Beach and LA) and second largest airborne trade gateway (LAX), the SCLTC is an ideal organization for using the industry-recognized, nationally portable CLA/CLT certifications to advance the skills and knowledge of the front-line supply chain logistics workforce."

Alan Braggins, Grant Manager, adds:

"This grant will serve as a major step in providing enhanced workforce skills to the large community of logistics companies in this region who are moving increasingly toward the use of advanced technologies and processes to remain competitive," says Alan Braggins, grant manager of MSSC.

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