UNA forms partnership with Manufacture Alabama

Manufacture Alabama and the University of North Alabama form a partnership that will offer increased access to higher education for manufacturers throughout the state.

According to a press release from UNA, with the newly formed partnership, employees of Manufacture Alabama-member companies are eligible to receive a special scholarship directly from UNA.

“The partnership is intended to provide additional opportunities to manufacturers to complete their higher education degrees or gain important training and certifications,” said Bryan Rachal, UNA communications director.

Rachel said the partnership will also provide employers with an affordable in-state option to groom current employees for future leadership roles. 

“The University of North Alabama is pleased to partner with Manufacture Alabama to offer an array of degree options to its members,” said Dr. Ross Alexander, UNA vice president for Academic Affairs and provost. “UNA is dedicated to workforce development and educational attainment throughout the state.”

According to www.manufacturealabamaorg, Manufacture Alabama is a leading trade association in Alabama and is the only trade association in the state dedicated exclusively to the competitive, legislative, regulatory and operational interests and needs of manufacturers and their partner industries and businesses.

“This partnership with UNA, a four-year institution, represents one of the last remaining pieces of MA’s commitment to education and workforce development in Alabama,” said Manufacture Alabama President George Clark. “So much of our time and resources have historically been dedicated to the community college system, K through 12 and other programs.”

The scholarship amount to be awarded will be 20 percent of the course’s tuition and fee value, and any of UNA’s online or traditional graduate or undergraduate courses are available under the scholarship’s provisions.

Any of UNA’s online or traditional graduate or undergraduate courses are available under the scholarship’s provisions, according to Rachal.

“Now we are expanding the ability of manufacturers to go on to earn the highest levels of education, and not just in north Alabama, but throughout the state through UNA’s online offerings,“ Clark said.  

The only requirements for eligibility are that the scholarship recipient must be employed by an Manufacture Alabama-member company and must have at least one year of full-time employment history with that company.

The scholarship is not stackable with any other UNA scholarship. Employees must provide an employment verification letter yearly in order to continue the scholarship.

Students can submit a “Manufacture Alabama Scholarship” form, found on UNA’s website. After submission, students will receive an email or phone call from one of UNA’s admissions counselors. According to una.edu, each student’s personal admissions counselor will walk him or her through the enrollment process each step of the way.

Students will have to send an Employment Verification Letter from his or her Human Resource office to [email protected]

“Preparation of career-ready graduates to meet the economic needs of Alabama and the surrounding region is central to the mission of the University of North Alabama,” said President Kenneth Kitts. “As Alabama transitions from a traditional industrial to a knowledge-based economy, UNA is focused on delivering a well-trained workforce of the highest possible quality to business and industry.”

According to una.edu, UNA offers workforce training and opportunities through more than 50 accredited major, minor, certificate and graduate programs.

“We are tremendously excited about this new era of business and industry partnership in workforce development and wholeheartedly support state initiatives to ensure a competitive edge in the global economy,” Kitts said.

According to their website, Manufacture Alabama provides several services key to vibrant manufacturing operations, including: environmental, safety, human resources compliance, government and regulatory representation, workforce development strategies, transportation and infrastructure initiatives, industry promotion and tax, energy and other policy support.

Manufacture Alabama represents hundreds of companies, ranging from international corporations to small, family-owned operations, that share common interests and face similar competitive challenges.

According to www.manufacturealabama.org, the mission of Manufacture Alabama is to create a business and political climate that promotes a positive, competitive environment and enhances the opportunity for growth of Alabama manufacturers.