GE (NYSE: GE), in partnership with the Manufacturing Institute, Cincinnati State Technical and Community College, Alcoa Inc., Boeing and Lockheed Martin, today celebrated the accomplishments of the first group of U.S. veterans to complete classes from the Get Skills to Work (GSTW) program. With an estimated 600,000 open advanced manufacturing jobs across America, GSTW is joining major manufacturers and educators to help close the skills gap through training and skills matching for U.S. veterans. Eleven veterans participated in the completion ceremony at Cincinnati State’s Workforce Development Center. The event marks an important milestone for the nationwide program, whose goal is to train and match 100,000 veterans by 2015. The program also aims to empower employers with tools to recruit, onboard and mentor veterans. Today’s certification ceremony in Cincinnati included veterans who completed accelerated skills training in core manufacturing skillsets. The ceremony featured speakers Gary Sinise, actor & president, Gary Sinise Foundation; David Joyce, president and CEO GE Aviation; O’dell M. Owens, president, Cincinnati State; and Jim Golem, president, Cincinnati GSTW Advisory Board and Director of Human Resources, CTL Aerospace Inc. “A strong and forward-looking manufacturing industry is central to the long-term health and success of the U.S. economy,” said Joyce. “Veterans embody many leadership qualities that can help drive growth at GE and among our suppliers and community partners. This is an important step in a nationwide effort to help these men and women compete for long-term careers in the manufacturing sector, and ultimately drive U.S. innovation and competitiveness.” To ensure that the skills training meets the immediate needs of local employers, coalition partners worked with local businesses to develop the Cincinnati State curriculum. This curriculum-building process will be repeated and tailored to each pilot city this year, including Ft. Worth and Houston, Texas; Schenectady, New York; Greenville, South Carolina; Durham, North Carolina; and Evansville, Indiana.