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Woodlawn Manufacturing Facility Training Workers In Robotics

CHICAGO (CBS) — Thursday was the grand opening of a high-tech job training and manufacturing facility in the Woodlawn neighborhood.

Dr. Byron Brazier, chairman and CEO of the Arthur Brazier Foundation, and a pastor, is behind BSD Industries, or Building Self Determination. He called the manufacturing company a social enterprise.

“A robotics training program with an attached manufacturing facility,” he said.

Funded with a combination of public and private investment, BSD will manufacture plastic cutlery, with profits benefitting the community.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel toured the factory floor.

“This used to be a shoe factory. It’s being reimagined, reinvented to be a place of digital advanced manufacturing; not only making money, but training – every 20 weeks – 20 more workers,” he said.

The workers will include public housing residents, who will earn college credit on the job.

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