Manufacturing

The Path Less Taken: Barriers to Providing Career and Technical Education at Community Colleges

This report produced by Diane Auer Jones for the American Enterprise Institute, provides discussion on the type of post-secondary degree programs perceptions and significance to earnings. Findings include:

-The earnings associated with post-secondary education vary significantly based on one’s major and career path, among other things.

-Some certificate and associate degree programs in technical and allied health fields at community colleges can result in higher earnings than some bachelor’s degree programs.

-Despite evidence that vocational sub-baccalaureate certificates and degrees have a relatively high payoff, liberal arts and general studies programs have experienced the most rapid growth in community college enrollments and credentials. This may partially explain the mismatch between graduates’ skills and the skills employers demand.

-Community colleges face tremendous structural and policy barriers when trying to create new or expand existing vocational programs, including funding allocation formulas, accreditation requirements, federal regulations, transfer-of-credit policies, and stigmatization of occupational and vocational programs.


Alabama Manufacturing Certifications will Create Educational Pipeline to Jobs

Alabama Community College System is teaming up with the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council to offer industry certifications. Alabama will be the first state to offer the council’s certification across its public colleges, state officials said.

A significant number of people in the state -- about 22 percent of the state’s work force -- are in manufacturing and transportation, said Jeff Lynn, vice chancellor of work force and economic development for the community college system. Yet more coordination was needed, he said.

“Around the state, I didn’t see a steady, strong work-force pipeline plan,” said Lynn.


$200 Million from DOE Backed Up By $300 Million from Corporations Supporting STEM Education

Many of the country’s largest tech companies, including Amazon, Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Salesforce, pledged a total of $300 million for computer science education, part of a partnership meant to prepare students for careers in technology. The corporate donations follow a White House effort to direct federal money toward teacher training and resources that bolster science, technology, engineering and math. President Trump directed the Education Department to put $200 million in grant money toward computer science education.

Many of the companies involved in the computer science initiative have been pushing to increase computer training in schools. Tech companies see the STEM fields, and computer science in particular, as a weakness in American education and have pressed for coding and other classes to be bolstered to keep the United States competitive with nations that are pulling ahead in those areas.


Manufacturing Day 2017 at Over 2617 locations around the U.S.

Manufacturing Day is a growing grassroots movement of manufacturers dedicated to overcoming the shared challenges facing manufacturers today. The most pressing issue is a gap in skilled labor. 80 percent of manufacturers cannot find the skilled workers they need. This gap continues to widen. Manufacturers’ ability to address this issue has been hindered by the public perception that careers in manufacturing are undesirable and by the lack of sufficient preparatory education. Both of these problems stem from a lack of understanding of present-day manufacturing environments, which are highly technical. Manufacturing environments, which include highly trained, well-paid employees who work on state-of-the-art equipment, are commonly thought of as antiquated factories designed for low-skilled workers. Manufacturing Day addresses this misperception by giving all manufacturers an opportunity to open their doors and show, in a coordinated effort, exactly what manufacturing is.


Michigan Tackles the Challenges of Skills and Educator Gap

At the direction of Gov. Rick Snyder and the goals and strategies set forth by the Building Michigan’s 21st Century Economic report and the 21st Century Michigan Education Commission, we’re taking a holistic approach to elevating all pathways to good-paying careers in Michigan, especially those in the professional trades. We need to close our state’s talent gap, caused, in part, by a career awareness gap. Too many students are unaware of, and don’t always have access to, all the pathways leading to rewarding and good-paying careers.


Colleges Filling Skills Gap by Including Hands-On Training as Part of Curriculum

Change in Education must start at the University level. The following Institutions of Higher Education are leading the way. The NY Times is covering the story. “The economy and employers have changed,” said Louis Soares, vice president of the American Council on Education. “They want you to come in with a hot skill set, ready to go. Colleges are paying attention at different levels to what that means and trying to develop programs.” 

Some are doing that better than others. “Some institutions are very good,” said Gary Burtless, an economist with the Brookings Institution. “They have their ear to the ground, they’re listening to local employers and paying attention to what they need.”

 

Case Western Reserve University

 

Creating 15- or 18-credit minors may be one of the more effective strategies for preparing students to enter high-demand fields. Because a minor requires fewer credits than a major and few, if any, prerequisites, these allow colleges to be more flexible and responsive to changing industries and emerging technologies.


FIU Teaches Manufacturing Disciplines to Engineering Students

Among the more than 30,000 students attending renowned Florida International University (FIU) in Miami are some 4,000 young men and women pursuing degrees in various disciplines of engineering.  A required course for the mechanical engineering majors is Manufacturing Processes, located in the University’s Engineering Manufacturing Center, a focal point for Civil, Mechanical, Biomedical, Electrical and Computer Engineering, as well as Engineering Management majors.   It is here that they roll up their sleeves and get into the practical side of advanced manufacturing under the guidance of the Center’s coordinator and instructor Richard Zicarelli.

 

FIU Manufacturing

"Going Pro" in Michigan. State Agency's Join Resources to Promote CTE and Fill the Skills Gap

“Going PRO” is a Michigan campaign designed to elevate the perception of professional trades and to showcase opportunities in a variety of rewarding careers.

A sizable professional trades shortage exists in Michigan and is expected to continue through 2024. Professional trades will account for more than 500,000 jobs in the Michigan economy, and approximately 15,000 new job openings are expected annually in the state during that time.

Wages for professional trades occupations is 45 percent higher than other occupations – $51,000 is the median annual salary for these jobs!

Opportunities exist in a variety of emerging industries including IT, healthcare, advanced manufacturing, construction and automotive. And many of the career fields do not require a four-year degree.

Go Pro Michigan

Work in the Automation Age: Sustainable Careers Today and Into the Future

80% of manufacturers report a shortage of qualified applicants for skilled production positions, and the shortage could cost U.S. manufacturers 11% of their annual earnings. Manufacturing executives reported an average of 94 days to recruit engineering and research employees and 70 days to recruit skilled production workers. The skills gap is driving up what are already above average wages and benefits in U.S. manufacturing. Studies show an increasing skills gap with as many as two million jobs going unfilled in the manufacturing industry alone in the next decade.

The Association for Advancing Automation (http://www.a3automate.org) (A3) explores the impact of automation on the ever-evolving job market and the growing shortage of skilled employees with experience and training in advanced technologies. A3 examines the types of jobs that are going unfilled and reviews workforce development initiatives, including education, apprenticeships, and on-the-job training that will fill labor shortages and support ongoing economic growth and productivity. http://www.a3automate.org/work-in-the-automation-age-white-paper/

Working in the Automation Age

Makin' the MAKERSPACE

There is tremendous buzz lately about setting up a makerspace. Thankfully, educators, policy makers (for some reason they are not always one and the same?) administrators and the education community in general are realizing that in order to really cultivate metacognition and real-world skills, we need hands-on, project-based learning. Object-based learning is making a comeback, and teachers are connecting lessons back to the industry, creating a more vocational education. A big part of this movement towards active learning and STEM is creating a makerspace in the classroom.

Gittel Grant

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