By Dominic Manecke, Building Kentucky
Xometry, a global online marketplace connecting enterprise buyers with suppliers of manufacturing services, Kentucky Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman and Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS) President Dr. Paul Czarapata, along with Dr. Koffi Akakpo, the President of Bluegrass Community and Technical College (BCTC), recently announced an innovative public-private partnership in which Xometry will fund 50 scholarships for KCTCS students.
As part of its broader commitment to supporting small- and medium manufacturers in the Commonwealth and throughout the country, Xometry CEO Randy Altschuler announced the company is dedicating a portion of its equity to fund scholarships that are designed to train the next generation of skilled mechanical engineers, technicians and machinists. Information about applying for the scholarships can be found here.
“We’re very grateful for Xometry’s generous donation to fund scholarships for 50 of our students,” Dr. Czarapata said. “This will provide an opportunity for more Kentuckians to earn credentials that are in high demand in the manufacturing field. It’s also a win for employers who can’t find enough skilled workers.”
“Kentucky’s economy is on fire and today’s announcement underscores the fact,” Lt. Gov. Coleman said. “Xometry is betting on Team Kentucky, especially our students and next generation of leaders. We are proud to partner with Xometry and know this scholarship program will be transformative for 50 KCTCS students.”
In addition to KCTCS, Xometry is funding the scholarships through its previously announced Donor Advised Fund for nearly 250 students in five other key manufacturing states – Maryland, Wisconsin, South Carolina and New York, with Connecticut to be announced shortly. Last year, Xometry, in partnership with Howard University, pledged eight full tuition scholarships over four school years to students enrolled in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the Howard University College of Engineering and Architecture.
Xometry helps companies create locally resilient supply chains by providing access to domestic manufacturers, resulting in efficient development and production cycles so goods get to market faster. In funding the scholarships, Xometry is working to ensure that manufacturers can attract and train employees who will power the industries of tomorrow – aerospace, autonomous and electric vehicles, green energy, sustainable agriculture and robotics, among others.
Kentucky is a pivotal state for Xometry. The company acquired Lexington-based firm MakeTime in 2018 and has since more than doubled its workforce in the region. A year ago, Xometry opened a new 10,000 square-foot office in the city’s Cadentown neighborhood. Xometry CEO Altschuler cites the skill set of Kentucky’s labor force and its exceptional institutions of higher education for the company’s commitment to the state.
“As the largest digital marketplace of its kind, we work with thousands of manufacturers across the country. We uniquely understand their imminent needs, and a skilled workforce tops the list,” Altschuler said. “All of us at Xometry come to work every day committed to investing in the next generation of skilled workers and to accelerating innovation. We’re deeply committed to Kentucky, which is our second home, and we appreciate the support of Lt. Governor Coleman. We’re thrilled to partner with KCTCS to fund scholarships that will train the next cohort of manufacturing talent so they have the tools to succeed and help our industry continue to thrive.”
“I commend Randy Altschuler and the entire team at Xometry for their commitment to developing the next generation of leaders in manufacturing right here in Kentucky,” said U.S. Congressman Andy Barr (KY-06). “The Kentucky Community and Technological College System is the perfect partner for this initiative. I am looking forward to meeting recipients of these scholarships and seeing the impact this will make in our community for years to come.” Joining Altschuler, Lt. Gov. Coleman, Dr. Paul Czarapata and Dr. Koffi Akakpo for the announcement were: Kentucky State Representative Dan Fister (District 56); Chief Development Officer Kevin R. Atkins from the Office of Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton, and Lexington City Council Members James Brown (1st District) and Josh McCurn (2nd District).
To learn more about the Xometry, visit www.xometry.com. To learn more about the work of KCTCS, you can visit kctcs.edu.