Pace Industries awards manufacturing technology scholarships

Thu May 2, 2019 at 03:45 PM

Pace signing

New Pace Industries Manufacturing Technology award recipients are shown front row left to right:  Dalton Barnes, Brody Gutierrez Matthew Campbell and Sheldon Joe Walden.  Back row:  Dr. Rodney Arnold, Northark Vice President of Institutional Advancement, John Sherman, Pace Division Human Resource Manager, Dr. Randy Esters, Northark President, Hannah Niblett, Pace Recruiting Manager and Stacie Folks, Pace Training Manager.

As members of the baby boomer generation approach retirement the manufacturing industry faces a serious skills gap and there is strong competition to attract skilled workers.

Pace Industries is combating the shortage through a partnership with Northark Arkansas College designed to funnel workers into high paying careers in a very short amount of time. 

In 2016, Pace Industries created a scholarship program that pays tuition and other college expenses for students entering manufacturing careers. 

Students who are interested in robotics and manufacturing can attend college at Northark for free.  Students are awarded up to $2,750 each year, renewable annually until they complete the program.  They also have the opportunity to intern at Pace, getting valuable hands-on experience. 

Four local students received their awards at a scholarship signing ceremony this week. Scholarship recipients were Dalton Barnes of Harrison, Brody Gutierrez of Omaha, Matthew Campbell of Valley Springs and Sheldon Joe Walden of Kingston.

Before the presentation, Dr. Randy Esters, Northark President remarked, “North Arkansas College and Pace Industries are interwoven because we share a vision and commitment to provide a skilled workforce for our community and nation.”

Pace Human Resource manager John Sherman says “We are honored to be a strategic partner with North Arkansas College. We are also proud of these young student scholars, who will one day lead the manufacturing industries in Harrison AR.”

Conveniently located next to each other, Northark’s North campus and Pace share more than adjoining land.  Over the years, Pace has donated several pieces of high-tech equipment that has modernized the Manufacturing and Automated Systems Integration programs at the college.  In turn, Northark responds with customized workforce training and specialized class offerings designed to help attract and retain employees for this area. 

A couple of years ago Pace helped design and build a die cast training cell on the North campus.  Access to this equipment along with regular opportunities for students to visit the Pace facility has provided students and future Pace employees with a better understanding of the manufacturing field and has increased the potential for students future employment.

The public-private partnership is focused on the future success of Boone and the surrounding counties. For more information about the Pace Industries Manufacturing Technology Scholarship or to apply, contact Dr. Rodney Arnold, rarnold@northark.edu or call 870-391-3229.

North Arkansas College is committed to providing an educational and work environment for its students, faculty, and staff that is free from sexual discrimination including sexual harassment, sexual assault, and sexual violence. No form of sexual discrimination will be tolerated. See the full North Arkansas College Title IX Policy and Procedures for the specific definitions of sexual harassment and sexual violence, including examples of such conduct.