On December 22, 2014 the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (DLLR) awarded the Printing & Graphics Association MidAtlantic (PGAMA) a two year, $148,760 EARN Maryland Grant to develop and deliver training modules that address current and future workforce needs of the printing industry. The grant period runs from April 1, 2015 to June 30, 2017
Led by PGAMA, the Print Strategic Industry Partnership (PrintSIP) consisting of printers, binders and finishers, educational entities, and industry-related non-profits, oversee the development of the program. Following are the 4 modules that were developed and delivered under the grant:
- Module 1: Introduction to Graphic Communications
- Module 2: Digital Production Printing
- Module 3: Offset Press Operations & Binding and Finishing
- Module 4: Digital File Preparation and Output
Modules run for 6 weeks, 2 sessions a week, for 3 hours per session and are a combination of lecture and hands-on demonstrations. The modules are offered free of charge for attendees.
The heart of program revolves around PrintED—a nationally recognized accreditation for secondary printing and graphics programs. Modules are based on industry approved PrintED competencies, taught in PrintED accredited secondary school labs, by PrintED accredited instructors and students take PrintED Skill Connect assessments at the end of each module. The priniting lab at the Center of Applied Technology North in Severn, Maryland is being used as the pilot for the initial delivery of the training modules.
In June of 2016 the DLLR awarded PGAMA an additional $150,000 EARN grant to expand the offering of the modules to other sites around the state. The grant period for the second grant runs from July 1, 2016 to June 30, 2018.