How Kentucky Makes Manufacturers Out of Miners

Monday, October 02, 2017

“Hillbillies. Mountain people.” These are stereotypes all-too familiar to Doug Potter, who call Eastern Kentucky home. “People say we talk funny, and we’re not real smart.”

But this former coal worker gives the lie to these stereotypes. Potter is among the first graduates of eKentucky Advanced Manufacturing Institute, a specialized training program designed to increase the existing skills of former coal workers for advanced manufacturing jobs. Trainees learn Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machining—running the highly technical computers that operate lathes, routers, grinders, and other machines that build high-precision parts for the US manufacturing industry.

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