Tools

West Tennessee Treasures - Parsons - Digital Factory

By Brittany Patterson
By bpatterson@wbbjtv.com

The City of Parsons is jump starting job creation at its Digital Factory.

"At this point, we're collecting a pool of talented workers, technologically savvy, that we can use to be upwardly mobile," said Digital Factory Parsons Campus Director, Shane Bridges.

REDI or the Regional Economic Development Initiative administered grant money to the award winning program, launching it's pilot in Parsons.

"It's important for any rural area," said Bridges. "The opportunities for jobs are so limited here and as manufacturing leaves the states, there has to be some way to replace those jobs."

Parsons' Digital Factory is replacing those jobs, providing three week technological training courses and the opportunity to work for a web-based company.

"The end goal of what we're doing is for people to work at home and make good livings at home," said Bridges. "This could be - those work-at-home type, phone and computer based jobs could be the next wave of employment nationwide, not just here in rural America, but I think we're at the forefront of that here."

Parsons' Digital Factory has already created a wave of employment in Parsons, creating 35 jobs since its opening in July 2011.

"I'm very proud of that - to create 35 jobs, to be be a part of creating those jobs here in a small community. When you're talking about a town with a population of 2,400, percentage-wise, these numbers are becoming significant," said Bridges. "We're going to succeed, it's going to spread, it's going to happen."

REDI's goal is to eventually launch a Digital Factory in each county of the Southwest Tennessee Development District.