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CCC&TI, Furniture Industry Partners Unveil New Furniture Factory Lab

HUDSON, NC (April 26, 2019) — Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute provided a first glimpse at the future of workforce training for the furniture industry during a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday on the campus in Hudson.

CCC&TI unveiled the new Furniture Factory Lab to a crowd of local government, education and furniture industry leaders, while celebrating the various partnerships with private industry that made the project possible.

Officials from the furniture industry and Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute (CCC&TI) cut the ribbon at Thursday’s Furniture Factory Lab opening at the college’s campus in Hudson, N.C. Pictured, from left to right: American Home Furnishings Alliance Chief Executive Officer Andy Counts, CCC&TI Board of Trustees member Tom Thuss, CCC&TI Board of Trustees member Alvin Daughtridge, CCC&TI Board of Trustees Vice Chairman Jerry Church, CCC&TI President Dr. Mark Poarch, Lectra Americas President Edouard Macquin, Bernhardt Vice President of Human Resources William Howard, Fairfield Chair President Dixon Mitchell and McCreary Modern President Rick Coffey.

“It’s very much state-of-the-art,” CCC&TI President Dr. Mark Poarch said, while speaking during the event. “This is the ultimate collaboration of business, industry and education. Our partners came together to create something special, and something that’s needed in our community.”

The Furniture Factory Lab is an innovative workforce program that will prepare CCC&TI students for the next generation of furniture manufacturing by offering training in state-of-the-art technology and processes in cutting room automation, sewing and upholstery.

The new training space, as well as the expansion of the college’s Furniture Technology Institute, is made possible by help from international furniture technology and machinery provider Lectra, which donated a machine for the new lab, and local manufacturers Bernhardt, Fairfield Chair and McCreary Modern, who helped design and plan the space.

At Thursday’s ribbon-cutting event, Brian Kammerer with Lectra Americas conducts a demonstration of the Lectra Vector IX, which the company provided to CCC&TI to help establish the Furniture Factory Lab.

The newly remodeled space is designed to simulate a factory environment and will house the college’s Furniture Technology Institute, which includes the Upholstery and Industrial Sewing training programs.

Thursday’s ribbon-cutting event on the CCC&TI campus included a demonstration of the Lectra Vector IX with Mosaic, one of the most advanced systems for creating perfectly matched patterned furniture pieces. The event also featured remarks from furniture industry and college leaders.

Speakers for the event included CCC&TI Board of Trustees Vice Chairman Jerry Church, Furniture Today Editor in Chief Bill McLoughlin, Bernhardt Vice President of Human Resources William Howard, Fairfield Chair President Dixon Mitchell, McCreary Modern President Rick Coffey and Lectra Americas President Edouard Macquin.

“With the rapid growth of smart, agile production and manufacturing, an educated and technologically trained workforce is essential for the success of furniture brands,” Macquin said. “We are honored that CCC&TI is using our technology to prepare students for the future of American furniture manufacturing.”

CCC&TI is currently registering new students for the upholstery and industrial sewing courses and has plans for additional training programs that will utilize the new equipment and space that was unveiled Thursday.

Anyone interested in registering for Furniture Technology Institute courses may call 828-726-2242 for more information.