Skills Update
December/January 2018/2019
Happy Holidays from the ICATT Apprenticeship Program!
2019 is almost around the corner and we are happy to share the latest updates from our Skills Initiative. We want to thank all of our partners who enable great apprenticeships, and help to build a sustainable workforce for the future of modern manufacturing.

2018 was a great year! Not only did we celebrate the graduation of our first ever ICATT cohort , our Train the Trainer courses also certified dozens of new trainers/mentors at Network Companies in the South and Midwest. 

Thank you for an amazing 2018 and we look forward to 2019. We wish you happy holidays.

Upcoming timeline:

  • December 2018: Recruiting and trial employment
  • January 2019: Spring cohort for ICATT Advanced Manufacturing Technicians begins (Chicago region)  
  • January 15-18: Train the Trainer Course, Buffalo Grove, IL
  • February 6: HR Roundtable, Wheeling, IL
  • Recruiting, recruiting, recruiting
  • March: Train the Trainer in Illinois
  • May 2019: Apprentices begin trial employment period
  • July 2019: Commitments signed
  • August 2019: Semester begins 

Kind regards,

Virginia Attaway Rounds
Director, Skills Initiative & ICATT Apprenticeship Program
U.S. Ambassador to Germany visits Apprenticeship Program
The U.S. Ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, visited the ICATT Apprenticeship Program and GA CATT program earlier this week from December 12-13. The purpose of the visit was to tour through different states and to see first hand, how American based companies implement the idea of an apprenticeship benchmarked on the German model.
In Chicago, Ambassador Grenell visited two ICATT Network Companies, WITTENSTEIN USA and BBS Automation Chicago . He toured their facilities and spoke with former and current ICATT Appren tices. After this, his visit took him on to Atlanta, GA, for a roundtable discussion with GACC South and a number of companies who are training apprentices. This included major German automakers as well as SMEs, showing that apprenticeships based on the German Dual Education System work for companies of all sizes.  

GACC Midwest Awarded Management of Michigan's MAT 2 Apprenticeship Program and Welcomes New Team Member
GACC Midwest has been selected to support the management of the Michigan Advanced Technician Training (MAT2 or "Matsquared") Program in Michigan. MAT2 is an initiative of Governor Rick Snyder, based on a trip to Germany, and GACC Midwest played an active role in the creation of the program in 2013. GACC Midwest already certifies company-specific apprenticeships at several of the MAT2 participating companies.

With the addition of the MAT2 program, the ICATT Team also welcomes its newest member, Bernadette Duncan. From past assignments, Bernadette has experience in the manufacturing industry as well as in the field of skilled trades and will therefore be a valuable addition to our team. You can reach Bernadette at or 586-321-4889.

ICATT Apprenticeship Program in Numbers - 2018
This year, the ICATT Apprenticeship Program is very proud to announce that its' network has grown by 25 companies in 2018 and also welcomed 42 new ICATT Apprentices which form the fall cohort of 2018.

WITTENSTEIN and Brose Win GACC Apprenticeship Award
Congratulations to Brose North America Inc . and WITTENSTEIN in North America named winners of this year's GACC Apprenticeship Awards!

Both companies were honored for their efforts and investments in workforce development and education, as well as the creation of valuable career pathways for young Americans. The award also highlights the impact the apprenticeship model has made to the individual careers of the winning company's apprentices.

This year's awards were presented at RGIT (Representative of German Industry and Trade ) on November 14 in Washington D. C. A keynote speech was delivered by HE Dr. Emily Haber, Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany.

Train the Trainer Seminar in Chicagoland; New Dates May Be Added
Our ICATT Apprenticeship Program Train the Trainer seminar on January 15-18 in Buffalo Grove, IL is SOLD OUT, though new dates may be added. 

The seminar will give trainers tools and methods to communicate effectively with their apprentices and pass on their skills and knowledge. This seminar will result in an international certification based on German standards and is free of charge for ICATT Network Companies.

Companies interested in participating in an additional seminar in early 2019 should contact Geneva Scurek or call (312) 585-8339.  
Welcome to Our New ICATT Network Companies
ProMach/Federal Manufacturing . ProMach is a family of best-in-class packaging solution brands serving manufacturers of all sizes and geographies in the food, beverage, pharmaceutical, personal care, household as well as industrial goods industries. Federal Manufacturing is a ProMach product brand supporting complete filling systems for a wide range of beverage, food and non-food applications .
Silgan Holdings Inc. is a leading manufacturer of rigid packaging for shelf-stable food and other consumer goods products. The company is also a leading supplier of metal containers as well as a worldwide supplier of metal, composite and plastic closures for food. and beverage products.
UniCarriers Americas Corporation is a fully integrated manufacturer of forklifts throughout the world. Their seasoned workforce is dedicated to ensuring a superior customer experience, having earned UniCarriers Americas its solid reputation as a quality leader in the material handling industry. UniCarriers facility in Marengo, Illinois, sets the standard for forklift manufacturing.
Watlow Electric designs and manufactures all components of a thermal system, such as industrial heaters, temperature sensors and controllers. The company brings its experience to numerous industries, including semiconductor processing, environmental chambers, energy processes, diesel emissions, medical and foodservice equipment.

To join the ICATT Apprenticeship Program or for more information, please contact Joshua Seeberg
or call (312) 494-2170.
Open Position: Join the GACC Midwest Skills Initiative Team
GACC Midwest is looking for a new team member: 

  • Account Manager & Technical Training Advisor, Skills Initiative and ICATT Apprenticeship Program, focusing on helping companies optimize their on-the-job training  
Recap: "AdA International Trainer" Graduation Ceremony
The GACC South congratulates our first cohort of "AdA International Trainer" graduates of our Train the Trainer program . We hosted an evening with networking and light conversation. Guest of honor such as Matt Brass (Georgia State Senator), Casey Cagle (Lt. Governor of the State of Georgia) and Inga Hennicke (Desk Officer International Operations in Education at the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research) were present to celerabte the graduates.

"AdA International Trainer" seminars are an important building block used by German Chambers of Commerce to ensure trainer quality on-site world-wide. 

Want to join us for an upcoming AdA Train the Trainer course in the South? Please contact Nicole Heimann .
Recap: CEO of the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry Visits Atlanta
The GACC South was thrilled to host a delegation of representatives from Germany, led by Dr. Martin Wansleben, CEO of the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry. 

Dr. Wansleben was accompanied by Dr. Christian Forwick and Bengt Beyer (Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy), Freya Lemcke (German Industry and Trade), and the CEOs of Regional German Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

The delegation met with apprentices and trainers at E.G.O. North America in Newnan, GA to learn about their experiences with German-style training. Other stops included the GACC South’s headquarter in Atlanta, the Porsche Experience Center and the Martin Luther King Jr. Historical Site. Furthermore, Dr. Wansleben and guests joined the GACC South’s 40th Anniversary Annual Gala. The Gala was a glamorous end to an exciting visit.

For more information, please contact Nicole Heimann.
Recap: E.G.O. North America Hosts German Delegation
A German delegation visited the production site of E.G.O. North America to learn about the current status of apprenticeship programs in the U.S. and future developments.

The delegation consisted of Matt Brass (Georgia State Senator), Inga Hennicke (German Federal Ministry of Education and Research), Dr. Moritz Ballensiefen (German Embassy in Washington DC), Reiner Valier (Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry), Hannes Barske (Deputy German Aerospace Center) and Maren Verfuerth (Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training).

Participants were introduced to the cluster solutions for SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) in apprenticeships. Afterwards apprentices and trainers of the GA CATT apprenticeship program shared their experiences with the guests.