Hawkeye Community College Selected to Join New Project to Advance Racial Equity in Manufacturing

posted on Monday, February 7, 2022 in  College News
WATERLOO–Hawkeye Community College announced today that it will join a new national project led by The Century Foundation (TCF), the Urban Manufacturing Alliance (UMA), eight urban workforce development organizations concentrated in the Midwest, and 12 other community colleges across the country. The groups, known as the Industry and Inclusion Cohort, were selected through a competitive process and funded by Lumina Foundation, to strategize solutions, develop credential-based training programs to create a more racially inclusive future for manufacturing, and help deepen relationships between employers and communities.

 “We are thrilled to be selected as a part of this national effort,” says Dr. Todd Holcomb, president of Hawkeye Community College. “As demand for skilled manufacturing workers grows in the Cedar Valley and in the state, it is imperative to be more inclusive in our recruitment, training, and employment processes. We are eager to share our expertise from our credential programs that connect students directly to manufacturing jobs, learn from our fellow cohort members, and ensure a more racially equitable future for the manufacturing industry.”

Pre-pandemic estimates indicated that the United States needed an additional 2.4 million manufacturing workers over the next decade. In Iowa, manufacturing employs more than 17% of the workforce and accounts for more than 17% of GNP.

Community colleges are uniquely positioned to connect more people, particularly people of color, to well-paying and sustainable jobs. It’s critical that manufacturing jobs are not just filled, but are accessible to all people, particularly people of color, who have long faced barriers to attaining well-paying and sustainable jobs due to systemic racism throughout our society, including employment.

As part of the Industry and Inclusion 2.0 cohort, Hawkeye Community College will work with TCF, UMA, and 12 other community colleges across the country: Bishop State Community College (Mobile, AL); Pima Community College (Tucson, AZ); Sierra College (Rocklin, CA); Norco College (Norco, CA); Community College of Denver (Denver,  CO); College of Lake County (Grayslake, IL); Ivy Tech Community College (Indianapolis, IN); Baton Rouge Community College (Baton Rouge, LA); Forsyth Tech Community College (Winston-Salem, NC); Lorain County Community College (Elyria, OH); Houston Community College (Houston, TX); and Milwaukee Area Technical College (Milwaukee, WI). The project is supported by Lumina Foundation, a national philanthropy focused on equity and educational attainment and based in Indianapolis.


  1. Advanced Manufacturing
  2. Diversity and Inclusion
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