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$7.5 million state investment supports Illinois' growing EV industry and workforce

Christian Fernsby |
Governor JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) joined Heartland Community College to celebrate the ribbon cutting of its new state-of-the-art Advanced Manufacturing Training Center.

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Funded in part by a $7.5 million capital grant as part of the state's larger $15 million manufacturing training academy investment, the electric vehicle manufacturing training facility prepares students to meet the growing needs of the Illinois' expanding EV industry.

"Programs such as Heartland's represent the best of Illinois' commitment to investing in and educating the next generation of workers," said Governor JB Pritzker.

"That's why my administration pledged $15 million to open these centers and why my FY25 budget proposes another $24 million—Illinois must be ready for the jobs of the future."

Heartland's electric vehicle manufacturing program - which launched at a temporary site in August 2021 - provides students with training, certificates, and degrees in Electric Vehicle (EV) and Energy Storage (ES) Technology.

The program also provides intensive upskill Electric Vehicle Technology Certificates for individuals with prior traditional automotive training and experience.

Additionally, the facility will provide a space for state-of-the-art advanced manufacturing programs in robotics, renewable energy, and automation.

The new 45,000-square-foot state-of-the-art facility supported approximately 200 construction jobs.

The facility incorporates remodeled space to further support programs such as robotics, HVAC, welding, and digital media, in addition to the newly constructed State Farm EV Lab.

The training program exemplifies partnership between businesses, regional and local economic development organizations, and education partners - creating a true ecosystem designed to provide training in areas that grow our workforce and meet the needs of area industries, such as EV manufacturer Rivian.

The state has also invested $7.5 million in a similar training facility at Metro East's Southwestern Illinois College.


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