The first step on the journey of finding a fulfilling career is identifying what you value in a profession. If you’ve reached that disheartening point in your current role where you simply can’t envision a future that you feel good about, or if you’re seeking your first career choice and want to make sure it lasts, then it’s crucial that you first decide what you want out of your job, your career and your life.

While there are probably many potential roles that you could see yourself in, the list gets shorter when you consider the importance of a liveable salary, a legitimate career path and an opportunity to achieve your goals from a professional standpoint. There is a short-list of careers that can offer a work-life balance, strong earning potential and an enjoyable day-to-day existence at work; at the top of that list are jobs in manufacturing.

The Advanced Manufacturing Training Expansion Program, or AMTEP for short, focuses on providing manufacturing training to unemployed, underemployed and inexperienced career seekers in order to help those people move into fulfilling manufacturing careers. Not only will the free training program, which includes over 300 hours of class time, prepare you for your first job in manufacturing, but it will also offer graduates the opportunity to be placed directly into a position with an established company on a defined career path.

Let’s take a closer look at the AMTEP program and discover how a manufacturing training program can be your first step towards a better future.

Everything you Need to Know About AMTEP

AMTEP is a training program, set up through Community Colleges and vocational schools, that is designed to help people move into careers in manufacturing. The training program includes 300 hours of training at vocational schools local to the job seekers, 100 hours of foundational training, tours of manufacturing facilities, and entrance into industry job fairs (job fairs which are full of manufacturing companies seeking new talent). Upon completion of the program, graduates will be equipped with job readiness skills, and will very likely be placed in roles within well-respected manufacturing companies.

The program is being funded, in large part, by a $4.5 million investment by the GE Foundation, which is headquartered in Boston and has a sizable manufacturing facility on the North Shore of Massachusetts. The administration of Governor Charlie Baker is also heavily invested in the program’s success.

But the training program would have no chance of success without the collaboration and commitment of the educators, employers and workforce organizations who are committed to curbing the manufacturing skills gap by supporting and coordinating training for adult learners, high school students and unemployed and underemployed individuals by matching them with full-time work that meets the demand of employers in the area.

In order to be eligible for the free training program, applicants must be currently unemployed or underemployed, have a high school diploma or GED, be 18 years of age or older, and legally eligible to work in the United States. Assuming these requirements are met, and the applicant is determined to be a good fit for the program, there will be a variety of locations, including community colleges, highschools and vocational schools at which applicants can attend the courses.

How AMTEP Can Change Your Life

The opportunities presented by AMTEP have the potential to be truly life altering. For individuals who have always had an interest in manufacturing but were unsure of where to start, or for people looking for a career change in order to improve their lives, AMTEP offers a fast-track to success in the industry. But that doesn’t mean it will be easy. As with any rewarding profession, hardwork and a thirst for knowledge will be essential to capitalizing on the opportunities afforded to members of the program.

Waiting on the other side of that hardwork and commitment are the skills needed to reclaim control of your career, and transform your quality of life.

Entry level hourly wages in manufacturing are over $18 per hour, and after just four years of working in manufacturing roles, the average hourly wage rises to $35 an hour. That type of career progression and earning potential is difficult to find anywhere in today’s workforce. Manufacturing workers, According to the California Manufacturing Network, are also more likely than workers in any other industry to have quality employer-provided benefits like medical insurance and retirement packages.

Not only will AMTEP give trainees the tools needed to thrive in the industry for years to come, it will also get people placed in positions not long after the training is complete. In fact, 95% of trainees who have graduated from the program have been successfully placed in positions with manufacturing organizations. These placements ensure that the skills developed by attendees of the program will go to good use, and that these well-trained individuals will have the opportunity to prove their value almost immediately.

The advantages of this program extend far beyond the workplace. With increased hourly wages, strong company benefits and opportunities for career advancement, the quality of life outside of work for these individuals will, in many ways, improve dramatically. Consistently strong income, combined with the sense of accomplishment that so many experience when building and developing components which are crucial to essential industries such as the aviation, energy and medical fields, can fundamentally alter the outlook one has on their future. An increased sense of self worth combined with the ability to strive for more within a career is an equation that can almost guarantee a higher level of satisfaction in life.

It’s never too late, or too early, to take control of your career. AMTEP is designed for those who want to begin a fulfilling career while pulling themselves out of their current situation. Regardless of prior experience, the hours of training offered by AMTEP will equip job seekers with the skills and knowledge necessary to thrive on the factory floor.

While current jobs in manufacturing have higher salaries, better benefits and stronger career growth than ever before, there are also a staggering amount of open positions. This means that job seekers who have a skillset in manufacturing are, right now, in extremely high demand.

Acquire that skill set with AMTEP, then build the life you know you’re capable of.