Marshall University President Brad D. Smith joined campus and community leaders, policymakers, and team members of the Robert C. Byrd Institute (RCBI) today to announce a new name for the long-time institute, which now will be known as the Marshall Advanced Manufacturing Center. The announcement comes after approval from the Marshall Board of Governors at its Wednesday meeting.
The rebrand reflects the honing of technical services and workforce training solutions for manufacturers while also positioning the Marshall pillar of excellence for growth.
“Our continuous commitment to the major areas of emphasis resulting from West Virginia Forward effort has guided our strategic areas of focus at Marshall University. Advanced manufacturing remains a tremendous growth area for our state and surrounding Appalachian region. Building on the decades of innovation at the Robert C. Byrd Institute, we are further strengthening Marshall University’s position as a national leader in this important sector,” Smith said. “Our rebranding effort builds on this strong foundation and sets the stage for boosting the center’s services and training options ten-fold.”
RCBI was founded in 1990 and has delivered manufacturing training to more than 26,000 individuals and, on average, serves 300 businesses per year.
“RCBI workforce training programs truly embody the Marshall for All, Marshall Forever mission by offering customized training and certifications for workers to climb to the next level,” said H. Toney Stroud, Marshall’s chief legal officer and external engagement liaison. “Coming from the private sector, I understand industry demands, and this advanced manufacturing center offers unique assistance from supply chain workshops to inventor events to classes and seminars for the public. I am excited about the future.”
Long-time former director and CEO Charlotte Weber shared her support for this rebranding.
“It is the right time to rebrand – we have new leadership, a new energy and still a dedicated team of professionals who remain committed to advancing the manufacturing sector,” Weber said. “This effort respects our past while paving the way for the future.”
The staff is also enthusiastic about this rebranding effort.
“Both President Smith and the Marshall team appreciate higher education as an economic engine, and under their leadership Marshall is leaning into our next chapter of industry engagement,” said Derek Scarbro, interim director of the center. “We are effectively positioning our team for the next chapter of service.”
The name change is effective immediately.
About Marshall’s Advanced Manufacturing Center, formerly known as RCBI:
Since 1990, the center has delivered innovative solutions with leading-edge technology to advance manufacturing and entrepreneurship across West Virginia and beyond. Clients range from students, individuals and small businesses to major manufacturers, including Fortune 500 companies such as Boeing, Northrop Grumman and Toyota. The center’s locations and training facilities in West Virginia feature more than $22 million in advanced technology for shared use, training, small batch production and rapid prototyping. RCBI has delivered manufacturing training to more than 26,000 individuals in areas ranging from computer-controlled machining and welding technology to quality implementation and additive manufacturing (3D printing). Specifically, nearly 1,000 individuals have completed its nationally recognized machining and welding academic programs, 95 percent of whom have gone on to careers in their chosen fields. With more than 750 years of combined industry experience, RCBI’s staff served 306 companies and delivered workforce training to 764 individuals in 2022 alone.