Cirrus Aircraft Partners With Lake Superior College For Workforce Development Program

Sept. 12, 2013
Aircraft Assembly Pre-employment Program is part of a Minnesota Job Skills Program Grant.

DULUTH, Minn. -- Cirrus Aircraft this week announced a partnership with Lake Superior College to develop and implement an Aircraft Assembly Pre-employment Program. The program is part of a Minnesota Job Skills Program Grant for workforce development and is aimed at recruiting, training and preparing low income individuals for assembly jobs at Cirrus.

The grant was awarded to Lake Superior College and Cirrus in June and will fund the program's curriculum development and enrollment for up to 60 participants. The first group to begin instruction will start October 14.

"This project highlights how higher education, government and industry can work together to develop a workforce for the region's emerging aviation and manufacturing sector," said Patrick Johns, President of Lake Superior College. "It's great example of a local educational institution working to meet the needs of a regional employer by accessing a state-funded grant."

"Through this partnership with Lake Superior College, candidates will receive the necessary training to prepare them for an assembly job at Cirrus," said Pat Waddick, President and COO of Cirrus Aircraft. "To keep up with production demands, we are projecting the addition of 60-80 new assemblers by the end of the year. We are proud to support Lake Superior College's mission to develop our local workforce."

Eligible participants will be recruited and screened by SOAR Career Solutions and the Duluth Workforce Center. Upon enrollment in the program, participants will take part in classroom training delivered primarily at Lake Superior College. Cirrus personnel will instruct at least 20 percent of the courses as well as provide site visits and lab work, which will take place at the company's Duluth facility.  The three-week curriculum comprises courses in Aircraft Structure and Terminology, Composite & Mechanical Assembly, Production Systems, Quality Systems and more.

Participants will receive the opportunity to interview with Cirrus upon successful completion of the classroom component. If hired, they will begin paid on-site training followed by a job position completed under a trainer who assesses workmanship, knowledge and abilities. Upon verified proficiency, participants will receive their manufacturing stamp that qualifies them to perform an assembly job with Cirrus.

For information about participating in the Aircraft Assembly Pre-employment Program, please contact: SOAR Career Solutions at 218-722-3126, [email protected].

About Cirrus Aircraft

Cirrus Aircraft is a recognized leader in general aviation. Its all-composite line of personal aircraft - the SR20, SR22 and the turbocharged SR22T - incorporate innovative and advanced performance, electronic and safety technologies, including Cirrus Perspective™ by Garmin® avionics and the unique Cirrus Airframe Parachute System™ (CAPS). To date, total time on the worldwide Cirrus Aircraft SR-series fleet surpassed five million flight hours with 77 lives saved as a direct result of CAPS being a standard safety feature on all Cirrus aircraft. The Cirrus Vision SF50 jet, with over 550 production positions reserved, will provide a new personal and regional business transportation solution: the personal jet. All Cirrus aircraft are made in the U.S. with a direct sales force in North America and authorized sales centers covering export markets in 60 countries around the world. Cirrus Aircraft is wholly owned by China Aviation Industry General Aircraft Co., Ltd (CAIGA). For additional information on Cirrus and its products visit

About Lake Superior College

LSC is a member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system.  With approximately 4,500 students enrolled this fall semester, LSC is northeastern Minnesota's largest two-year college. LSC provides a wide range of programs and services, including liberal arts and science courses for transfer, technical programs intended to provide occupational skills, continuing education, and customized training for business and industry.

About SOAR Career Solutions

SOAR Career Solutions is the employment services and training leader in the Northland, serving Duluth and St. Louis County since 1980. SOAR's innovative programs serve people at all levels of career and personal development by providing pre-employment services, job skills training, personal development training, career planning, and employment retention services.
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About the The Minnesota Job Skills Partnership

The MJSP acts as a catalyst between business and education in developing cooperative training projects that provides new job training or retraining of existing employees. MJSP grants are given to educational institutions with businesses as partners. The program is part of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), the state's principal economic development agency.