Work Based Learning

We’re launching a Pilot Project!

Through a partnership with the Work Based Learning Consortium, we’re building opportunities for the autism community to find jobs within the advanced manufacturing sector.

The Autism and Advanced Manufacturing Partnership

There is an 85% unemployment rate for the members of the autism community who are willing and able to work. While the stereotypical roles for autistic individuals includes IT roles and data entry, we believe the advanced manufacturing sector (AMS) could benefit from accessing this talent pool. With an employment gap which has been growing for the past 20 or more years due to lack of investment in training and retention, the AMS needs to keep businesses running.  For the purpose of this pilot project, we’re focusing on Mold Maintenance Technicians and CNC operators though when proven successful, we’ll be exploring other roles such as Aerospace Sealer or CMM Operator.

 The ultimate objective of this project is to create a well-tested approach to helping a segment of the ASD community to secure employment in the advanced manufacturing sector.  The ASD community has been identified as a potential pool of candidates to fulfill the growing gap of talent for the advanced manufacturing industry. Why? Many members of the ASD community possess certain characteristics which would make them prime candidates for the AMS such as:


  • 18+ – 29 yrs old
  • Independent in daily activities
  • Minimum education: high school diploma
  • Able to handle 40hr work week
  • Enjoys working with hands and building
  • No knowledge or training in advanced manufacturing is required


  • Attention to detail
  • Ability to work with little supervision
  • Good with repetitive aspects of work
  • Desire to deliver high quality service
  • Problem solving skills
  • Interpersonal skills: able to work on a team
  • Successful within roles requiring physical exertion

Job Overviews

CNC Machinist (Level 1)

What Does A CNC Machinist Do? – Machining is a big part of manufacturing processes. A CNC machinist is specially trained to program, operate, and maintain CNC Machines. He or she uses expert knowledge to set up machines that are capable of cutting, bending, forming, and polishing raw metal into finished parts and tools. Metal parts used to be cut and molded by hand. Today, a CNC machinist reads and interprets blueprints, programs and inputs data into a computer system, monitors production, makes careful adjustments, and inspects the accuracy of a machine’s operation and resulting parts.

  • Do you like creating, making, and building things?
  • Do you like working with your hands?
  • Do your friends call you when they need help in fixing mechanical things?
  • Are good with details and precision?
  • Do you like tinkering with mechanical things?
  • Do you like using your brain for critical thinking in math and physics?
  • Do you enjoy working mostly independently?
  • Do you want to have responsibility and be accountable for the things you produce at work?
  • Would you like to have a job where you can be busy all the time?
  • Would you prefer to be on your feet – moving around, rather than sitting at a desk all day?

If you can answer “Yes” to almost all these questions, then you might want to consider a career as a CNC Technician.

Mold Maintenance Technician (Level 1)

What Does A Mold Maintenance Technician [Level 1] Do? – Molding machines and molds must operate properly and repeatedly over many hours and days to ensure that the parts produced meet quality standards and production rates.  A Mold Maintenance Technician [Level 1] is responsible for cleaning, assembling and disassembling new and/or refurbished molds so they function properly; s/he will also, as directed, evaluate molds to determine root cause of molding issues, and will check mold functionality for air, water and hydraulic effectiveness.

  • Do you like making and building things?
  • Are you good at assembling things – using tools?
  • Do you have a good eye for detail?
  • Do you like getting your hands dirty?
  • Do you like using your brain and thinking?
  • Are you OK with math – addition, subtraction, etc.?
  • Do you enjoy working relatively independently?
  • Do you want to have responsibility and be accountable?
  • Are you OK with physical activity?
  • Are you in good physical shape?
  • Would you rather be busy most of the time?
  • Do you like being on your feet all day, doing stuff?

If you can answer “Yes” to almost all these questions, then you might want to consider a career as a
Mold Maintenance Technician

Do you have a position in advanced manufacturing we could help you fill?

Learn about the benefits of the work based learning competency program and how the autism community can help solve the growing employment gap within the advanced manufacturing sector. Currently at 45%, it’s expected to get worse in the next 5 years. Get ahead of the problem and keep your workforce strong!


Are you interested in applying for our pilot program? Please get in touch!


Are you interested in applying for our pilot program? Please get in touch!