ABCD Corp. will participate in state’s new Policy Academy

Altoona Blair County Development Corp. will participate in an initiative called the Policy Academy.

Pennsylvania is among 10 states selected as part of a program designed to grow and strengthen their manufacturing base. Over the next year, interdisciplinary state teams will meet in Washington, D.C., and separately in their home states, to develop and refine strategies impacting manufacturing industries.

Based on specific needs and goals, states will develop working teams with representatives from the private sector, governor’s offices, state workforce and economic development departments.

Participating states are Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Missouri, North Carolina, Pennsyl­vania, Vermont and Wisconsin.

“It’s great news that Pennsylvania was selected, and ABCD Corp. is ready to help,” said Stephen McKnight, ABCD president and CEO, in a statement. “We have a proud history of making, innovating and production in our local region and throughout the commonwealth. We all want to ensure the next generation maker is ready to carry that tradition forward.”

With support from the Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership based at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, two national organizations — SSTI and the Center for Regional Economic Competi­tiveness — are coordinating the Policy Academy.

“The Policy Academy process empowers states to make proactive decisions that can improve the competitiveness of their manufacturing industries,” said Dan Berglund, president and CEO of SSTI. “Although each state is dealing with their own challenges and circumstances, there are a lot of opportunities for states and their team members to learn from each other.”

Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration championed the competitive application process.

Through the SSTI Policy Academy participation, Pennsylvania expects to develop a Manufacturing Strategic Roadmap to identify goals and objectives the state will use to strengthen its manufacturing environment.