The South Dakota Board of Education has approved a new welding and manufacturing technology program for Mitchell Technical Institute.
The program is a component of the South Dakota WINS workforce initiative that Gov. Dennis Daugaard announced during the Nov. 15 Workforce Summit in Mitchell.
The program was created in response to a high industry demand for welders throughout the state.
"A vibrant economy demands a well-trained workforce," Daugaard said in a Monday news release. "When we grow our economy and train our citizens for more good jobs, all of South Dakota wins."
The new program, brought to the board by Mark Wilson, state director of career and technical education, will begin training new welders and advanced manufacturing employees this fall.
The first class will have a capacity of 24 students, who can earn associate of applied science degrees in welding or manufacturing technology within 18 months.
"We want to thank the Board of Education and the governor for helping us get this welding and advanced manufacturing program off the ground," said MTI President Greg Von Wald in the news release.
"The governor understands the critical workforce needs of growing manufacturing companies in the James River Valley and beyond, and we look forward to responding to his leadership in addressing these issues by training South Dakotans to meet those needs."