Creating the First Generation of Robot Techs


Groundbreaking Event

The Fortress of York, a concept developed by The YMCA of York and York County and The Fortress Initiative, is slated to be an 8,000 square foot facility focused on robotics, artificial intelligence, and other emerging technologies. It will serve as a hub for education and awareness programs for local residents, with a particular focus on underserved and underrepresented communities.

“Advancements in technology are impacting how we think and react within our communities – from economic development to workforce skills and education,” said Larry Richardson, President and CEO of the YMCA of York and York County. “We are proud to partner with The Fortress Initiative, area schools, and other entities to provide opportunities to the residents of York.” 

The design for The Fortress of York, formerly the site of the Western National Bank, will include space for start-ups, established technology companies, and accelerated education and training providers. Local organizations will offer programs focused on workforce development, youth enrichment, and industrial prototyping.

The Fortress Academy, Pennsylvania’s first and only licensed college focused on developing the first generation of robot mechanics and addressing future workforce needs, will be housed at the Fortress of York.

“This project continues our efforts to build a brighter, more prosperous, and truly inclusive future as we face the challenges of what is being called the 4th Industrial Revolution,” said John McElligott, CEO of York Exponential and President of The Fortress Academy. “In the process, we will rebuild the middle class, empower the American workforce, and ensure people from all across York have access to opportunities for upward mobility.”

Operated by The Fortress Initiative, The Fortress of York is one of several community development projects grounded in the spirit of the original York Plan of 1940 and the York Plan 2.0. 


Who is The Fortress Academy?

The Fortress Academy is Central Pennsylvania’s FIRST and ONLY licensed Academy focused on robotics, artificial intelligence, and other emerging technologies. The demand for new technical talent has increased at such a rapid rate that traditional educational models have had a hard time adapting.

Our graduates will be ready to dive into any project or team, programming, repairing, and maintaining robots. With more and more companies building and augmenting their work-forces with robotics, the need for the skill sets taught at The Fortress Academy are paramount to our future generations’ success. 

The gap in the current job market is huge and continuing to grow. The Fortress Academy can serve as a catalyst for not only local business, but as an opportunity for more minorities, woman and veterans to enter the field of STEM as a career.

Learn The Fundamentals of Robotics and Artificial Intelegence?

It’s no secret that the world is being driven more and more by technology. From Facebook to smartphones, apps to robotics, the opportunities to improve your business seem endless. And yet there is a —the gap between the skills workers have and the skills employers need—has contributed to the decline of manufacturing employment. We see the job opening rates in the manufacturing sector nearly double, from 1.8 percent in 2001 to 3.1 percent in 2017. With that number set to increase in the coming decade there’s no better time to get you or the ones you care about, the manufacturing skills like welding and PLC to create the first generation of robot mechanics and help you thrive in the future!

What Drives Us?

You can see it, touch it, feel it. Technology surrounds us and the advances of the past decade have begun to catapult innovation at an exponential rate. Technology is affecting every industry. From manufacturing to medical, education to small business, the demand for new skills and a competitive edge is everywhere. Experts predict that in the coming decade over ⅓ of the population may be unemployable. Not unemployed, unemployable. The world is changing…..

The last time the world changed this much and this fast was World War II. During this time it was the small cities and rural areas of the United States that banded together, came up with a plan and leapt into action. They stood up to the overwhelming difficulties before them…..and they came out the other side, as one nation, victorious.

Inspired by a 70 year old plan from World War II entitled “The York Plan”, we at The Fortress believe the time for small communities to band together and lead is once again upon us. In the face of great change our cities and counties stood up to the challenges before us and saved our nation. We did it before, we can do it again.

WE BELIEVE that small cities and rural areas deserve the same opportunities as big cities when it comes to technology and technology training

WE BELIEVE that the changes in technology around robotics, manufacturing and employment present a unique opportunity for these communities to leapfrog into the future

WE BELIEVE in the people of these communities and their capability to adapt to the challenges of the future

WE BELIEVE The Fortress Academy will open a new form of manufacturing job

WE BELIEVE that everyone should have access to technology, regardless of race, socio-economic background or geographic location

WE BELIEVE  it is imperative our children be immersed in emerging technology if they are to compete and create the job market of the future.

Contact Us Today!

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