CNC supervisor to women considering manufacturing:
 “We can do it!”
The role of women in manufacturing is often depicted by Rosie the Riveter, the iconic symbol of women who took to the factories to replace enlisted men during World War II.

Though technology in today’s industry has evolved, lack of workers to fill the gaps in the manufacturing workforce remains. Recent studies demonstrate how women could again be the answer to that critical need.

Roxanne Shurtz, CNC supervisor at Kurt J. Lesker Company, an NCC Partner company, has championed that point of view during her 30+ year machining career in the North Huntingdon area. 

Seeking her first job back in 1989, she landed by accident at a small factory making windows. Her interest was piqued by the process and her problem solving skills gave her confidence to give it a try. Using manual machines early in her career helped Roxanne understand process, efficiency and productivity. She learned carbide polishing and finishing and worked on the automatic mechanism for automobile airbags. Another project was the Mustang Cobra head. When a coworker told her to “figure it out,” she did!

Since then, she has held positions of increasing responsibility at a number of local companies -- machinist, CNC operator, supervisor and manufacturing engineer among them. She currently supervises 15 men – ages 20-50s. Her resume demonstrates the versatility of manufacturing careers. At one time she handled customer inventory management and even designed and setup a new production area in one of her employer’s buildings. Once NIMS credentials were introduced in the 1990s, she enrolled in programs that honed those skills.

Roxanne attributes her success to her determination to learn on the job, ask questions and take on challenging projects. “It helps to have a thick skin,” she notes. “You have to prove yourself in an industry still skewing to male workers.”  But, she adds, it is much more respectful today. 

Just as the slogan on the Rosie the Riveter posters proclaimed, Roxanne believes “we can do it!”
New Century Careers featured in new report
by Tooling-U SME
New Century Careers was among five of Pittsburgh’s leading workforce development agencies successfully collaborating to address the skills gap in the recently released white paper “SPIRIT OF COLLABORATION: How Pittsburgh Develops Manufacturing’s Next Generation.” The paper was produced by Tooling U-SME, an industry leader in online manufacturing training with comprehensive programs. 
Operation Next Update
Operation Next is an initiative specifically created for small and mid-sized manufacturers whose businesses have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Catalyst Connection has partnered with New Century Careers and CCAC West Hills to offer additional opportunities for hands-on, performance-based learning on real manufacturing equipment. New Century Careers welcomed the first seven trainees for the CNC Machine Operations Pathway this month.  To learn more about the program contact Mara Peduto at
NCC now enrolling for the
M2K Machinist Training Program!
Registration is now open for New Century Careers’ tuition-free Machinist Training Program, MANUFACTURING 2000 (M2K). Classes begin soon at New Century Careers Anselmo Training Innovation Center in Pittsburgh. Call 412-258-6620 (option 4) to learn more.

Classes are FREE to qualified students and are offered at two locations:

  • Pittsburgh (South Side) Machinist Training - Daylight and Evening Classes - Next class starts soon
  • Eastern Westmoreland CTC Machinist Training - Evening Classes- Enrolling now!

Online applications are now available here.
M2K Spotlight: NCC hands-on training aids manager
Before joining the M2K program Thelisa was a managing machinist. She heard of NCC through her employer and was interested in getting a better understanding of what machinists did so she joined the M2K program.

“My intention was to be able to perform the tasks that my machinists do,” said Thelisa.

Thelisa said she found the hands-on portion of the program to be most beneficial. “I enjoyed the hands-on because you start understanding more of machining when you start learning the programming of it,” Thelisa said.

Thelisa finished the M2K program in February of 2021.
Congratulations to BotsIQ's Executive Director
Michel Conklin

New Century Careers congratulates BotsIQ Executive Director Michel Conklin on her appointment to the Women in Manufacturing Education Foundation Board of Directors. The Women in Manufacturing Association is the only national trade association dedicated to supporting women who have chosen a manufacturing career. Its Education Foundation aims to develop and support programs and resources for the advancement of these women.
Funder Spotlight
New Century Careers is honored to receive a grant from the Henry L. Hillman Foundation, which will help workers affected by the Covid-19 pandemic through tuition-free job training. Thank you for the tremendous support of NCC and the regional recovery efforts.
New Century Job Shop

The Job Shop is open!

New Century Job Shop assists manufacturers by providing parts from prototype to small batch production runs.

For a Job Shop quote, contact
Patrick Bendel at 412-258-6668 or
New Partner Companies
NCC welcomes Augustine Die and Mold, Workover Solutions and Brush Americas as its newest Partner Companies!
NCC is dedicated to helping with industry's workforce needs and uncovering sources of support for manufacturers. As a training partner, NCC provides a source of skilled workers who can help your company grow and adhere to high standards of product quality and customer service.

Interested in becoming a Partner Company to build the next generation of machinists? Contact Patrick Bendel at 412-258-6668 or
Promote your business in this Newsletter!
New Century Careers is offering a unique opportunity to promote your business, while at the same time supporting our nationally recognized programs that are training skilled workers for in-demand manufacturing jobs in the region.

Contact Becca Durkot, NCC communications & marketing specialist, at 412-212-0005 or, for additional information.
Looking for Machinists?
If you are a manufacturing company in need of machinists, contact New Century Careers at 412-258-6620.
M2K Alumni
New Century Careers acknowledges all alumni and reminds them we offer lifetime placement assistance. If you need help with your job search, contact 412-258-6620.
Ways to Support New Century Careers!
The best way to help is by making a donation.
Visit our site to learn about the many ways that you can support New Century Careers!
Click here to make a vehicle donation.
Please choose New Century Careers here
NCC's designee code is 1461264.
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New Century Careers (NCC)
305 East Carson Street 
Pittsburgh, PA 15219 
New Century Careers is a nonprofit manufacturer and technical skills development organization serving the Southwestern PA community through inclusive access to technical training opportunities while helping employers find and develop technicians seeking purpose, passion and success in the workplace.