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Harford's Leading Edge Training Center Powered by the Ratcliffe Foundation

Bringing workforce and entrepreneurial training to Edgewood!

Harford Community College's newest facility is strategically located at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Harford & Cecil Counties in order to provide easy access training to the southeastern portion of the County. It is home to programs in construction and trades, manufacturing, warehousing/supply chain/logistics, business, entrepreneurship, and more.

Most programs are offered at either no cost or are eligible for funding through the Philip E. & Carole R. Ratcliffe Foundation Scholarships. The goal of the programs is to get students trained in skill areas that enable them to secure living wage employment and/or to provide business and entrepreneurial skills so they can be self employed.

Students are guided thorough programs with help from dedicated Career Navigators and are provided with interviewing and resumé writing assistance, resources, and networking opportunities with local employers.  

Workforce Programs

Construction Trades Skills

This three-course program enables you to explore the construction industry and learn practical construction skills. Projects provide hands-on work with heavy equipment simulators and construction tools, preparing you for a job in the construction industry. By the end of the program, you will meet with representatives from local construction companies to discuss employment requirements and opportunities.   

Heavy Equipment Operations

Heavy equipment operators are in high demand! Companies are looking for skilled workers to drive the machinery used to build roads, bridges and buildings. This four-course training will get you ready to apply for those jobs. The program is taught using the National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) curriculum along with hands-on simulators to provide students with comprehensive operating experiences.

Warehousing, Supply Chain, and Logistics

This five-course program provides new and experienced supply chain professionals with opportunities to learn skills that can propel them to the next level of their careers. The program includes lecture, facility tours, workshops, hands-on experience and case study simulations. 

Forklift Certification Training
FRI  |  9 AM–5PM

Choose one of the following dates:
SEP 23  |  OCT 21  |  NOV 11

Complete your training and be eligible to sit for your certification exam in just one day! This all-day course includes both classroom and hands-on training for first-time drivers and those needing refresher training.

Students who successfully complete this course satisfy the requirements of  OSHA’s 1998 revised Powered Industrial Truck Operator Training Standard. Students must pass a written and practical test.

Basic Hydraulics and Pneumatics

In this course students explore one area of Basic Machining and Manufacturing Technology. Students learn the fundamental concepts important to fluid power, which includes both pneumatic (gas) and hydraulic (liquid) systems. You learn about basic components: reservoirs/receivers, pumps/compressors, valves, and cylinders and at the conclusion of the course will be able to apply for jobs as hydraulic and pneumatic technicians in factories, ​laboratories, and offices. 

To Register

Prospective students must first contact a Career Navigator. They provide funding and program details, expectations, and information regarding completion of  application. 

Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Programs

Small Business Development Center logo

SBDC is dedicated to promoting economic growth in our community.

The resources provided by the SBDC help small businesses and start-ups to grow and manage their business. As a non-profit organization, most services are free.

The SBDC's low-cost training events and workshops help strengthen your business knowledge and apply it immediately to your business plans. Whether starting a new business or running an existing business, SBDC can help you guide your business to a more successful future. 

SBDC Business Consulting

Providing confidential one-on-one business consulting assists businesses with growth, loans, marketing, government contracting, technology, and more.

Ready, Set, Go! (in-person)

Ready, Set, Go is held monthly and designed for small businesses in the planning phase of building a company. Participants will learn the “nuts & bolts” of becoming an entrepreneur, from business planning to legal business entity formation. Additional information is shared with the participant on the SBDC, its services, what one can expect when entering the business world, the business plan, finance management, funding sources, marketing . . . a guide to beginning a successful future in a business world

Ready, Set, Go! (virtual)

Cottage Food Industry

The Cottage Food Industry Law of 2012 in Maryland opened the door for small-scale food entrepreneurs to launch a food business without investing in a commercial kitchen. This change in regulations allows individuals to prepare certain types of food items in their home kitchen. However, there are special requirements and laws for cottage food production including packaging and labeling, types of foods allowed, and location of sales. Understand these laws and regulations and explore marketing and financial processes to make your cottage food business a success!

  • Date/Time & Location:
    6–8 PM
    MON, SEP 26  |  Leading Edge Training Center +
    WED, SEP 28  |  Harford Community College, Edgewood Hall Commercial Kitchen. 
  • Target Audience: Pre-venture, start-ups, home-based businesses
  • Cost: No-cost
  • Register 

Business Model Canvas: Painting a Picture of Your Business

  • Location: Harford's Leading Edge Training Center powered by the Ratcliffe Foundation
  • Date/Time: WED  |  OCT 12, 2022
  • Target Audience: Pre-Venture, Start-up, In-business
  • Register

Microlending/Alternative Funding Seminar

Are you a small business owner looking to take your business to the next level? The Small Business Administration, Small Business Development Center, M&T Bank, MMG Capital Group, and Harford County Economic Development are presenting an in-person seminar to small businesses that are looking for alternative methods of funding. We will be discussing the programs and services that are offered by each organization, how to create a strong business plan, and the importance of developing, and maintaining relationships with lenders and cash flow statements.

  • Date/Time: WED, OCT 19  | 6–8 PM
  • Location: Harford's Leading Edge Training Center powered by the Ratcliffe Foundation
  • Target Audience: Pre-venture, Start-ups and Established Business Owners
  • Cost: No-cost
  • Register

Demystifying the Business Plan

  • Location: Harford's Leading Edge Training Center powered by the Ratcliffe Foundation
  • Date/Time: WED  |  NOV 9, 2022
  • Target Audience: Pre-venture, start-up, In-business 
  • Register 

Pathways to Entrepreneurship Certification Course

An entrepreneur identifies a need in the marketplace and comes up with an innovative business solution to fill that need and takes on both the risks and rewards of implementing their idea. As the leader of their company, an entrepreneur assumes full responsibility for the execution and success of the business on a daily basis, including creating a business plan, doing market research, developing a sales and marketing plan, developing and creating a budget, pricing and margin analysis, managing human resources, managing risk, and navigating future growth strategies. Our Pathways to Entrepreneurship workforce training program prepares you for your venture into entrepreneurship. Learn core competencies in business planning, market research, budgeting and accounting, human resources, managing risk, growth strategies, and much more. Includes 1-on-1 consultation.

  • Date/Time: Revolving Enrollment  |  Self-paced
  • Location: Virtual + scheduled time with a business consultant
  • Cost: $429, including text, business consulting, and cost of certification exam.

"The training students receive makes them job-ready, and for local employers,that's who they'll hire first. If you're looking for skilled employees, contact me for the opportunity to tour our facility and meet our students."
Dr. Austin Hill, Director for Strategic Partnerships

Celebrating the first Philip E. and Carole R. Ratcliffe Foundation Scholarship recipient completers.

graduates in caps and gowns pose at completion ceremony

First Heavy Equipment Operations cohort completes training with 100% employed as a result!

students standing on and around forklift