The South Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership (SCMEP) is introducing a 4-Part Cohort of workshops that seek to solve regional workforce challenges. Multiple opportunities will be available for participating companies, industries, and community businesses. All classes will take place at SCRA 315 Sigma Drive in Summerville, SC 29486

The cohort workshops will cover topics that include the following:

1.       Make Your Workforce Your Competitive Advantage – October 6, 9 am to 1:30 pm

This interactive workshop focuses on building an irresistible place to work through a cohesive and holistic process of attracting, training, developing, and engaging your employees. Learn to apply the six-step Structured On the Job Training model, build a job skills or knowledge model and effectively deliver successful training using a Training Delivery Plan.

2.       Maximize Your Workforce’s Development – October 20, 9 am to 1:30 pm

This workshop focuses on effectively attracting and on-boarding new talent, while expanding your
available labor pools. You will also learn to maximize development of incumbent employees by creating
clear paths of development while delivering training that is highly effective.

3.       Manage Your Workforce to Maximize Employee Contribution – November 17, 9 am to 1:30 pm

This session links employee development paths to company career ladders. Develop a compensation
based on promoting from within , paying for acquiring new skills and knowledge while demonstrating
strong performance.

4.       Build A Culture of Workplace Leadership – December 1, 9 am to 1:30 pm

This final workshop helps you build leadership skills in existing leaders while developing a workplace
environment where everyone has a proactive role in improving the company. Learn to set goals and
expectations effectively, and leverage continuous feedback to reinforce positive behaviors and conduct
effective performance reviews.

Through recent meetings with SCMEP, Berkeley County Economic Development aims to support this initiative.

Cost: $3,000 per company for up to 3 people per company. There is a SCDOC discount of 50% for companies over 20 EE and 90% discount for companies with 20 EE or less.

A site visit will be provided by SCMEP to help facilitate the learning outcomes for each participating company.

Contact your SCMEP Regional Vice President to Register Click Here

Brian Kuney, Regional VP for Berkeley, Charleston, Clarendon, Dorchester, Georgetown, Horry, Marion, Sumter, Williamsburg Counties
Send an Email

ABOUT SCMEP: The South Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership (SCMEP) is a private, non-profit group that serves as a proven resource to South Carolina businesses, providing them with a range of innovative strategies and solutions. An affiliate of the National Institute of Stands and Technology (NIST), SCEMP operates under the U.S. Department of Commerce to promote innovation and industrial competitiveness. 

DuPont expands production of its MOLYKOTE® Specialty Lubricants at manufacturing facilities in Berkeley County, South Carolina with $59M investment and 20 new jobs.

To address the growing market for autonomous and electric vehicles, as well as to meet regulatory requirements and sustainability needs for automotive and industrial applications, DuPont has invested more than $40 million in MOLYKOTE® manufacturing facilities to ensure continuing global capacity and a cost-effective supply chain for the production of high-quality, high-performance lubrication products. Coupled with extensive tribology and material science expertise, these investments reinforce DuPont’s capability for market growth in automotive, electronics, food and beverage, healthcare, heavy industry, and renewable energy and position the company for geographic expansion.

The new production sites, which feature state-of-the-art control systems for improved capacity and reliability, also benefit from transfers of equipment and experienced personnel from former MOLYKOTE® manufacturing sites.

DuPont’s Cooper River site – located in Berkeley County, South Carolina – is home to DuPont™ Hytrel® Thermoplastic Elastomers operations and has been expanded to include manufacturing of MOLYKOTE® Specialty Lubricants.

“Expansion of the site has created tremendous economic growth and opportunities for DuPont and the Tri-County region,” said Bill Alexander, Cooper River site leader and unit leader for DuPont’s MOLYKOTE®, Hytrel™ and Liveo™ brands. “We are excited to be in an exceptional position to better service our customers and provide solutions to their lubrication challenges.”

In addition to its new investments in its facilities, DuPont has supported the Cooper River community with both ongoing volunteer efforts and a donation of property for a much-needed parking area for the Cypress Gardens boat landing and botanical preserve.

About MOLYKOTE® Specialty Lubricants
For more than 70 years, customers around the world have trusted the MOLYKOTE® brand for performance and expertise to solve or prevent virtually any lubrication problem and to save energy. Available through a global network of channel partners, MOLYKOTE® brand lubricants – which include anti-friction coatings, compounds, dispersions, greases, oils and fluids, and pastes – serve the automotive market and industrial/maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) markets. For more information about the MOLYKOTE® brand, visit Follow MOLYKOTE® on Twitter: Follow MOLYKOTE® on LinkedIn:

About DuPont Electronics & Industrial
DuPont Electronics & Industrial is a global supplier of new technologies and performance materials serving the semiconductor, circuit board, display, digital and flexographic printing, healthcare, aerospace, industrial, and transportation industries. From advanced technology centers worldwide, teams of talented research scientists and application experts work closely with customers, providing solutions, products and technical service to enable next-generation technologies.

About DuPont

DuPont (NYSE: DD) is a global innovation leader with technology-based materials and solutions that help transform industries and everyday life. Our employees apply diverse science and expertise to help customers advance their best ideas and deliver essential innovations in key markets including electronics, transportation, construction, water, healthcare and worker safety. More information about the company, its businesses and solutions can be found at Investors can access information included on the Investor Relations section of the website at

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DuPont™, the DuPont Oval Logo, and all trademarks and service marks denoted with ™, SM or ® are owned by affiliates of DuPont de Nemours, Inc. unless otherwise noted.

S.C. Department of Commerce Business Services Division will provide free monthly webinars that focus on workforce and retention options to help support your S.C. business.  Speakers from across the state will provide information on available staffing programs, workforce resources, state labor laws and regulations, and other timely information that can assist your business’ continued success in the Palmetto State.

Join us on Wednesday, July 21, 2021 from 11:00 AM until 12:00 PM

Elisabeth Kovacs, Deputy Director of Workforce Development, S.C. Department of Commerce

will discuss topics that address workforce recruitment, retention services, talent management, and more! 

Click here to register today!

BCDCOG, Charleston Metro Chamber, CRDA and more partner to lead
comprehensive economic recovery and resiliency plan focused on real change.

The most comprehensive partnership of business, government, academic, nonprofit and community leaders in our region’s history today announced the launch of One Region Roadmap: Opportunities for All. The Roadmap
is an economic recovery and resiliency plan that will define a healthy greater Charleston while offering real solutions, implementable actions and measurable results.

The effort is supported by a broad array of stakeholders from across Berkeley, Charleston, and
Dorchester counties, and will be guided by public input. The plan — built on action and
outcomes — will also outline a pathway to economic security, stability and opportunities for
all in our region.

Your Voice Matters

Please fill out the survey below to help us understand what challenges you are facing and opportunities the tri-county region should pursue. All survey responses are voluntary and anonymous. We greatly appreciate your time and input.


“This is an exciting opportunity for all of us to work together to address deeply rooted and
systemic problems, while developing both short-term and long-term regional priorities,” said
Dr. Kendra Stewart, One Region Chair and Director of the Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Center for Livable
Communities at the College of Charleston. “Public input is critical in creating the most
comprehensive plan our region has ever seen. Each of us is responsible for moving our
community forward,” she added.

One Region Roadmap: Opportunities for All is the next evolution of the One Region
Strategy launched in 2016. It begins a new strategic planning and public input process,
providing a broad platform for the community to address economic challenges old and new
— and to prepare for adversities yet to come. The plan should be completed by February 2022.
“One Region Roadmap builds upon the previous five-year global competitiveness strategy
and its core values, and will serve as a blueprint for continuing the economic momentum our
region has built over the last 10 years, while eliminating disparities and creating opportunities
for all residents to thrive,” said David Ginn, CRDA President & CEO.

The effort is led by One Region stakeholders including BCDCOG, Charleston Metro Chamber,
Charleston Regional Development Alliance, and the public, private, academic, and nonprofit
sectors of our community.


SB Friedman Development Advisors has been retained to lead the development of the
Roadmap. The firm, which has previous and ongoing experience in the region, is renowned
nationally for its analytical, strategic and financial consulting services in support of complex,
high-impact development projects.

One Region Roadmap is possible thanks to a $400,000 U.S. Economic Development
Administration grant secured by BCDCOG, with additional support from partner agencies.
“This partnership is built on the shared desire of the public and private sectors to make our
region stronger and more resilient when facing major disruptions such as the global
pandemic, and addressing long-standing challenges such as those related to inequality,” said
BCDCOG Executive Director Ron Mitchum.

One Region Roadmap will identify barriers to expanding our regional economy and
providing residents with opportunities for economic mobility.

The ultimate success of One Region Roadmap lies in its ability to create real change.
“This plan will provide an intentional focus on equity and economic mobility, creating
implementable action items to ensure our region offers all residents the opportunity to live,
learn and earn,” said Charleston Metro Chamber President and CEO Bryan Derreberry.
The One Region Roadmap effort kicked off today with a community-based, 500-invitee,
virtual focus group. Multiple engagement opportunities will be available for the entire
community through the end of 2021, including a survey this summer and public meeting in
the fall.

For more information, please visit

Berkeley County joined state and local leaders on June 23 to celebrate the grand opening of the Volvo Car University Campus and Technical Center located in Ridgeville.

The campus consists of buildings that, together, make close to 89,000 square feet available for training and office space. With the addition of these buildings, the company will better educate retailer technicians on current vehicle technologies.

This grand opening will bring more opportunities to Berkeley County citizens and the state of South Carolina.

Read more about Volvo Car University here.

COLUMBIA, S.C. – XIFIN, a national leader in revenue cycle management (RCM) for diagnostic providers, today announced plans to establish operations in Berkeley County. The company’s new East Coast location will create more than 150 new jobs over the next two years.

With over 20 years of experience helping diagnostic providers manage business and optimize revenue cycle through the company’s cloud-based RCM and laboratory information systems, XIFIN offers clients access to the information and tools needed to optimize financial visibility and operations, including understanding business trends, ensuring maximum reimbursement and improving cash flow.  

Read full article by S.C. Department of Commerce here.

Charleston, SC –The Charleston Metro Chamber’s Center for Business Research conducted a compensation and benefits survey in spring of 2021, in collaboration with the Berkeley and Greater Summerville / Dorchester Chambers of Commerce. The survey was open to all types of business establishments — all sizes and all business sectors. 

Nearly 100 companies, representing approximately 40,000 employees in the region, participated in the biennial online survey.

Key findings from the study include:Pay increases appear to have returned to 3% to 3.5% for all types of employees within all sectorsAbout 60% of employers reported having a work-from-home/telecommuniting policy in placeLack of or too few applicants is reported as a top concern for both manufacturers (88%) and non-manufacturing (47%) employers”The survey was designed by the Center for Business Research with input from local experts in the human resources field in order to develop the most effective questions to be included in the survey,” said Jacki Renegar, Director of The Center for Business Research. “We hope that the results of this survey will better inform regional organizations’ compensation and benefits practices.”

The 2021 Charleston Metro Area Compensation and Benefits Practices report encompasses the survey results and the benefits and compensation practices among employers in the three-county Charleston Metro Area (Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester Counties).

This study’s objective is to provide information on compensation practices of firms operating in the three-county region to:Help existing firms evaluate their own organization’s compensation practices more effectively, particularly with the pandemic’s effect on work environmentsAssist companies in creating a benchmark analysis to use for strategic planning purposes, andProvide trends and general information on typical local employer practices to prospective companies and site selection consultants looking at the Charleston region as a potential business location.To view the 2021 Compensation and Benefits study, visit

Erin Aylor, SVP of Marketing
About the Center for Business Research

The Center for Business Research, founded in 1990 by the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce, compiles, analyzes and distributes economic and demographic information on the Charleston region. Conducting both primary and secondary research, the Center is a resource for unbiased business, demographic and economic statistics, and its work has been recognized nationally through numerous awards and presentations. The Center has been conducting wage and benefits related surveys since 1997. Though study participants differ each time the survey is conducted, significant shifts in reported policies and practices over time can be indicative of real-time trends in local employer practices. For more information, contact the Center for Business Research at 843-577-2510, or visit the resource center of the Metro Chamber’s website the Charleston Metro Chamber

With approximately 1,600 member organizations representing 160,000 professionals, the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce serves as the collective voice of the business community, and a catalyst for regional economic advancement and member success through Talent, Advocacy, Leadership and Business Development. Visit

Tri-County STEMersion 2021 is happening June 21- 30. This two-week, professional development event is a hands-on institute for middle and high school instructors and school counselors in Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester Counties. The institute reinforces the importance of math, science and soft skills for the region’s workforce and economic growth. Educators visit local companies as “Edgineers” where they “study” work processes, participate in hands-on workplace activities and lesson writing forums to create new industry-inspired lessons for use in South Carolina’s K12 system to propel all students to become global learners and thinkers.

The institute also facilitates the development of a pipeline of future qualified employees. Through the provocative and intriguing leadership experience, educators, the main catalysts of student achievement, return to their classrooms to stir the career interests of local students while compelling the students to use creativity, teamwork, persistence, initiative and problem-solving skills to innovate our next world. Finally, the institute creates a path for a regional grassroots career awareness campaign in which local industries are introduced to additional educators, parents, and students after Tri-County STEMersion concludes.

Tri-County STEMersion goals:

  • Building awareness of in-demand careers, cultures, skill needs and competency requirements of STEM companies
  • Visiting and exploring companies with the use of the Tri-County STEMersion industry guide
  • Fostering the creation of industry-inspired lessons using the Tri-County STEMersion template and rubric
  • Inspiring the creation of problem-solving projects that permit students to “touch” the workplace by engaging students in the execution of competencies and skills required by local industries
  • Providing a virtual platform to upload lessons for use in the South Carolina K12 system
  • Facilitating the creation of artifacts that describe Tri-County STEMersion to stakeholders

The participating Berkeley County industry partners are Santee Cooper, NIWC, Thorne, Google, and Berkeley County School District.

Read more about Tri-County STEMersion at

June 3, 2021 – Berkeley County joined local leaders to break ground on the new Downtown Nexton. The multi-million dollar project is expected to take five to seven years to complete and will cover just under 100 acres. The area, which is currently timberland, will soon have 1,200 multi-family residential units, retail, entertainment, hospitality buildings, restaurants, office space and more.

Post and Courier reports,

A new $300 million-plus, mixed-use development of retail, restaurants, offices, hotels and apartments is now underway in the suburban Charleston area.

New Jersey-based Sharbell Development Corp. recently broke ground on the 99-acre Downtown Nexton project between Sigma Drive and Brighton Park Boulevard in the growing Nexton community in Berkeley County. 

The company bought the parcel in 2019 for $18.5 million, according to Berkeley County land records. It’s west of the retail and restaurant center called Nexton Square.

With construction expected in phases over the next four or five years, the first project will include multifamily units, a mixed-use building with loft apartments over ground-level retail spaces and several outparcel buildings.

Altogether, three apartment parcels will offer a variety of tenant offerings, including a 55-plus, upscale rental community. Some of the mixed-used buildings will include upper-floor lofts with a rooftop lounge and several common-use rooms. Units will range from studio to three bedrooms.

The new construction will offer 110,000 square feet of office space for sale or lease, starting at 9,000 square feet in flexible, two-story buildings on Brighton Park Boulevard. CBRE of Charleston is handling sales and leasing.

Additionally, Downtown Nexton  will include more than 200,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space interspersed throughout the project and along Sigma Drive.

Outdoor amenities will include walking trails, pocket parks and two manicured ponds on the north and south sides of the project. 

Century Aluminum expanding operations in Berkeley County

More than $60 million investment will create 100 new jobs  

Berkeley County, S.C. – Century Aluminum, one of the nation’s largest primary aluminum producers, today announced plans to expand operations in Berkeley County. The more than $60 million investment will create 100 new jobs.

Founded in 1995, Century Aluminum produces standard-grade, high-purity and value-added primary aluminum products, with operations in the United States and Iceland. With its Mt. Holly operation, located at 3575 U.S. Route 52 in Moncks Corner, Century Aluminum casts molten aluminum into standard-grade ingot, horizontal direct chilled (HDC) ingot, extrusion billet and other primary aluminum products.

The state-of-the-art operation improves efficiency, energy utilization and environmental protection. The expansion is expected to be completed by the end of 2021. Individuals interested in joining the Century Aluminum team should visit the company’s careers webpage.

The Coordinating Council for Economic Development has approved job development credits related to this project. 

QUOTES “At the Century Aluminum Mt. Holly smelter, the aluminum we produce every day is a key input for many sectors of the economy, including automotive, electrical, construction and aerospace industries as well as our military. Thanks to the leadership of Governor McMaster, Secretary Hitt and their teams, Century Aluminum is proud to be increasing production capacity at Mt. Holly, alongside a more than $60 million investment and the creation of 100 new good-paying aluminum jobs.” -Century Aluminum Incoming CEO and President Jesse Gary 

“Century Aluminum’s Mt. Holly plant has long served as a unique economic driver for Berkley County and their success is a win for South Carolina. I congratulate Century Aluminum and all who have worked so hard to make this day a reality.” -Gov. Henry McMaster 

“Companies like Century Aluminum continue to help strengthen our state’s manufacturing sector. The company’s decision to expand in South Carolina shows that our state’s advantageous economic environment and talented workforce not only attract business, but also help them grow.” -Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt 

“Berkeley County is proud of Century Aluminum’s long history in the county and the job opportunities it has provided through the years. This expansion will further the industry’s impact on the county with increased investment and more high-paying jobs. We look forward to seeing Century Aluminum’s continued contribution to the county’s economic success.” -Berkeley County Supervisor Johnny Cribb 

Century Aluminum is expanding operations in Berkeley County.
The more than $60 million investment will create 100 new jobs.
Century Aluminum is one of the nation’s largest primary aluminum producers.
Located at 3575 U.S. Route 52 in Moncks Corner, S.C.
Individuals interested in joining the Century Aluminum team should visit the company’s careers webpage.