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Monday, May 22, 2017
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The State of the Rural South's Economy

Selling your Rural Community's Assets

Small Town's with Unique Assets

Highly touted reshoring event hits speed bump, says A.T. Kearney. Really?

Chinese investment surfacing in the South? Yes, finally.

The performance of this Southern industry sector of late has earned an official name: the "Southern Aerospace Corridor."

A success story from the Mississippi River Delta

The 50-year economic development war in the U.S. is over; the South won.

The big dogs are about to eat: Soon, the automotive industry will light up the Southern Auto Corridor again 

Kentucky: The Spirit of the South

New Build-Ready Program Making More Sites Ready-To-Go

A Perfect Partnership

Next Gen KIH Program Taking Broadband to Every Corner of the State

Digital Version

Aerospace Industry Takes Off in the American South

Launching Pad for Growth and Innovation

In "Plane" View

"The Best Airplane Built in America"

Aerospace Industry State Overviews

Petrochemicals and the Southern Manufacturing Renaissance

Non-Petrochemicals and the Southern Manufacturing Renaissance

Ten Reasons Why Manufacturing is Booming in The South

The Most Southern Place on Earth

Ensuring a resilient Delta Region by training a skilled workforce

Driving toward success in Alabama's Black Belt

Arkansas's Big River Steel has found its home in the heart of America's Delta Region

Building a healthy economy and a healthy workforce in Illinois

Innovation and collaboration are building a Work Ready Kentucky

Louisiana's industry off to a fast start

Perfected in Mississippi

Certifying Southeast Missouri and beyond

Select Tennessee sites offer competitive edge

Reshoring and its potential effect on the Mississippi River Delta region

  
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Driving toward success in Alabama's Black Belt

Assistant Professor Balakrishna Gokaraju, of the University of West Alabama, demonstrates robotics used in UWA's automotive technician certification program with equipment funded by the Delta Regional Authority.While Alabama's automobile manufacturing industry continues to grow, finding a qualified workforce to keep up with the demand presents a challenge.

A $100,500 grant from the Delta Regional Authority is helping the University of West Alabama (UWA), in Livingston address that need by developing a program to train students to become certified automotive and industrial maintenance technicians. The qualifications are a requirement to obtain jobs with the Mercedes-Benz U.S. International plant in nearby Tuscaloosa County, which recently expanded operations. The vehicle manufacturer produces four Mercedes models, with another to be added in 2015.

Graduates can also find employment at a number of manufacturers that supply components for Mercedes-Benz vehicles, as well as other automobile manufacturers in Alabama.

Thirty-nine students are enrolled in the short-term certification course, which began in fall 2013. The DRA funding, which was used to purchase  state-of-the-art equipment, supplements other funding from the U.S. Department of Labor and area businesses.

While the goal is to provide people with jobs and manufacturers with skilled labor, officials also hope that a highly trained workforce will be an incentive for other industries to locate in Alabama's Black Belt counties, which for decades have experienced high employment, poverty and a loss of population because of fewer available jobs.

"Not only will we open doors for new industries who will consider our area for location, we will make it possible for people to secure employment in jobs where they will receive higher compensation than they would without this training," said UWA President Richard Holland.

  
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Southern Business & Development

Corporate and Industrial Sites in the World’s Fourth-Largest Economy

Southern Business & Development

  
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Steering the Automotive Industry to the World's Fourth-Largest Economy

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