Claiming two of the five fastest-growing occupations and providing 14.6 percent of the region’s jobs, the manufacturing industry is vital to Region 8’s local economies. The Manufacturing Partnership brings together local manufacturers to identify in-demand skills, improve the area’s manufacturing education and training programs, and develop innovative approaches to develop the region’s manufacturing workforce.
Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics (TDL) involves the planning, management and movement of people, materials, and products by road, air, rail, and water. It also includes related professional and technical services such as infrastructure planning and management, logistics, and maintenance of equipment and facilities. Region 8 has become a transportation and logistics hub because tier suppliers for numerous automotive suppliers are located in the region as well as major distribution facilities, including Walmart and Jo-Ann Stores Distribution Centers. The TDL Partnership works with businesses across this region to identify in-demand occupations, train individuals seeking new skills, and encourage workers to enter this growing field.
Health care has become one of the largest employment sectors in the State of Alabama and is a significant industry sector for Region 8. As a result, many of the high-demand, fast-growing, and high-earning jobs in Region 8 included licensed practical nurses, licensed vocational nurses, nursing aides, orderlies, attendants, biological technicians, personal home care aides, occupational therapists, and physical therapists. The Health Care Partnership works with local health care providers to help connect individuals in the region to training and education opportunities that would prepare them for quality employment in the region’s health care sector.
Region 8 offers rich culture and heritage, diverse scenery, and unique experiences including national historic sites, museums, world-class golf courses, major sporting venues at Auburn University, and access to outdoor tourism. As a result, accommodation and food service and retail trade are two of the region’s largest sectors, providing 11.3 percent and 13.85 percent of the region’s jobs. To ensure the region has an adequately prepared workforce, the Hospitality Partnership prepares individuals for a range of hospitality careers and works with local hotels, vendors, and operators to collectively develop the region’s hospitality workforce through training opportunities, career fairs, and collective investments.
Working with dozens of small and medium-sized companies, the Construction Partnership supports on-the-job training programs, apprenticeships in building trades, and postsecondary training offered by community and technical colleges to help people enter and succeed in construction.