MACNY, The Manufacturers Association and Mohawk Valley Community College to Partner, Train Transitioning Soldiers/ Military Spouses for Careers in Advanced Manufacturing through LIFT’s “Operation Next” Program

Syracuse, NY – LIFT, the Detroit-based, Department of Defense-supported national manufacturing innovation institute, in partnership with MACNY, The Manufacturers Association, announced their partnership with Mohawk Valley Community College to provide free training to transitioning service members, National Guard, Army Reserves, and their families for careers in advanced manufacturing through Operation Next®.

Operation Next provides an accelerated-hybrid program that combines online education with hands-on training. Upon completion, participants will be prepared to earn credentials from the National Institute of Metalworking Skills (NIMS), American Welding Society (AWS), and Smart Automation Certification Alliance (SACA).

Located in Utica, N.Y., Mohawk Valley Community College provides accessible, high-quality educational opportunities to meet the diverse needs of their students, focused on their success through partnerships, transfer and career pathways, and personal enrichment. As the semiconductor manufacturing industry continues to grow in the Central New York and Mohawk Valley region, there is a great need for transitioning soldiers to move into careers in advanced manufacturing.

Randy VanWagoner, Ph.D, President, Mohawk Valley Community College stated, “At Mohawk Valley Community College, we are committed to transforming lives through learning. For this reason, we are thrilled to collaborate with MACNY and LIFT to implement Operation Next, which provides a coherent pathway for military personnel to enter into rewarding careers in manufacturing and we are confident that the regional labor force will benefit from an influx of highly skilled and dedicated professionals as a result.”

Operation Next is the first program of its kind in New York State, providing soldiers transitioning out of the military and military spouses with a proven training program that prepares them with the knowledge and skills to obtain an industry-recognized certification in advanced manufacturing. Available in a number of locations nationally, Operation Next provides certification opportunities in the following career tracks: Computer Numeric Control (CNC), Industrial Maintenance, Welding, and Robotics. Operation Next gives greater access to soldiers to train and join the field of advanced manufacturing.

“Partnerships like these are critical for Operation Next to have the impact it is design to have and provide opportunities for our service members and their families,” said Marianne Donoghue, Senior Director, Talent Programs, LIFT. “We are thrilled to be working with MACNY and Mohawk Valley Community College to bring Operation Next to New York and help these servicemembers begin their advanced manufacturing careers.”

“Every year an estimated 200,000 service members transition out of the military. These individuals are equipped with many foundational skills and technical abilities from their time in the service that are transferrable to advanced manufacturing careers. MACNY is proud to partner with LIFT and Mohawk Valley Community College in the rollout of Operation Next in New York and to be an integral part of the solution to the manufacturing skill gaps, worker shortage, and continued growth of the semiconductor industry.” stated MACNY President & CEO, Randy Wolken.

MACNY is a leader in fighting the skills gap head-on through programs such as Partners for Education & Business, Inc. (PEB), P-TECH, Career and Technical Education (CTE), and The Manufacturers Intermediary Apprenticeship Program (MIAP), registered through the State of New York. Through partnerships with area colleges and businesses, the organization strives to engage students early and provide meaningful education towards a career in U.S. manufacturing.

Members of the New York National Guard and Reserve looking to enroll in the program can contact Patrick Langan, Operation Next Program Manager, at or visit for more information. Other Operation Next locations around the country can be found at

About LIFT
LIFT, operated by the American Lightweight Materials Manufacturing Innovation Institute, is the Detroit-based, public-private partnership between the Department of Defense, industry, and academia, committed to the development and deployment of advanced manufacturing technologies, and implementing talent development initiatives to better prepare the workforce today and in the future. LIFT funded in part by the Department of Defense with management through the Office of Naval Research. Visit follow on LinkedIn at LIFT or on Twitter @NewsFromLIFT to learn more.

About MACNY, The Manufacturers Association
MACNY, The Manufacturers Association, represents over 300 companies in a 26-county region in Central and Upstate New York. The 108-year-old organization provides human resource services, training, workforce development, purchasing solutions, networking opportunities, and advocacy support for its members. For more information, please visit or follow on LinkedIn at MACNY – The Manufacturers Association or Twitter @MACNY_MfgAssoc to learn more.
About Mohawk Community College

As a diverse institution with a global view, Mohawk Valley Community College provides opportunities for affordable education, with support from Oneida County and the State of New York, and offers career, transfer and transitional education, programs for personal and cultural enrichment, and supports community and economic development. For more information, visit