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PHOENIX — Maricopa Community College District, Pima Community College District and Central Arizona College signed a charter Thursday solidifying a partnership that will create a uniform curriculum to help advanced manufacturing operations in Arizona train the future workforce.

Private companies, including Boeing and Raytheon, will work with the colleges to develop a first-of-its-kind curriculum, a press release stated.

Currently 157,000 Arizonans are employed in manufacturing-related careers, and there is an organically developing concentration of advanced manufacturing operations along the Interstate 10 corridor from southeastern Phoenix to Tucson.

Raytheon recently announced it is adding nearly 2,000 jobs in Tucson, and Lucid Motors announced in November a plan to create 2,000 jobs in Casa Grande.

The first cohort is expected to be enrolled in this curriculum by September.

“This agreement will help Arizona respond to the needs of industry by providing a pipeline of workers to fill positions at large and small manufacturing companies across the state,” said Mark Gaspers, manager, national strategy and engagement, of The Boeing Co.

Central Arizona College’s president said CAC is committed to supporting workforce development and industry growth throughout Pinal County and the region.

“We are pleased to partner with Maricopa Community College District and Pima Community College District to help prepare the needed workforce for current and new advanced technology jobs,” said Jackie Elliott, president of CAC.

“This new, innovative partnership will grow Arizona’s workforce and continue to attract and retain businesses across our great state,” said Sandra Watson, president and CEO of the Arizona Commerce Authority.

“It’s a win-win-win. It’s a win for our colleges, who are training students to become skilled workers. It’s a win for our companies, who have a consistent and qualified workforce. And it’s a win for Arizona because our economy will continue to grow and thrive.”

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