(Before It's News)
“Each year, hundreds of thousands of people observe this day by attending open houses, public tours, and career workshops. As we mark 5 years since the first Manufacturing Day, we must inspire the next generation of workers and innovators to seek careers in manufacturing. Let us continue working to strengthen and expand the manufacturing jobs of tomorrow and ensure that opportunity for all is something we can keep making in America for generations to come.” – President Obama, October 6, 2016
U.S. manufacturing is making a comeback, with more than 800,000 new jobs added since the sector turned the corner after the Great Recession in 2010. For the last four years in a row, global CEOs have named the United States the best place to make and invest, and new capital investment is flowing in to a broad range of manufacturing technologies.
Tomorrow, on the fifth-annual Manufacturing Day, we mark an Administration-long focus on the technologies and skills that are the foundation of the most dynamic manufacturing sector in the world. The President is proclaiming October 7 as National Manufacturing Day to celebrate Made in America and renew his commitment to this vibrant sector.
The Administration is announcing important progress in support of American manufacturing, including:
- Announcements by 5 Federal Agencies, including grants to strengthen manufacturing supply chains by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, challenges to catalyze next-generation technologies by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and initiatives to support more American Veterans pursuing technical training in advanced manufacturing by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
- Commitments by more than 110 organizations, including the first manufacturing-oriented massive open online course of its kind by MIT, 18 expanded and inaugural Grand Challenge Scholars Programs by colleges and universities across the country, and 30 new manufacturing apprenticeships by the Manufacturing Association of Central New York.
- A new report by the National Economic Council, highlighting an Administration-long focus to strengthen the competitiveness of American manufacturing.
Too often, young people do not envision themselves in the manufacturing careers that proudly produce iconic Made in USA goods, like world-class aircraft engines, life-saving biopharmaceuticals, and cutting-edge automobiles. That’s why President Obama has proclaimed October 7, 2016 as National Manufacturing Day to celebrate the strength of American manufacturing and to motivate the next generation of manufacturers.
In support of Manufacturing Day, thousands of U.S. manufacturers are expected to host factory tours, hackathons, and career exploration panels, providing hands-on demonstrations of what 21st Century manufacturing looks like In addition to the more than 500,000 students and local organizations expected to participate, Administration officials will be celebrating the 5th annual Manufacturing Day, including:
- In Portland, OR, Department of Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker is moderating a panel of recent graduates with careers in manufacturing and touring demonstrations of 3D printers and robots at the Center for Advanced Learning. Secretary Pritzker is also joining local high school students for a facilities tour at Lam Research, an equipment manufacturer for advanced semiconductors.
- In Warren, MI, Department of Education Secretary John B. King, Jr. saw first-hand how production molds are designed and manufactured for the plastics industry at Proper Tooling, followed by a roundtable with students, employees of Macomb Community College, and employees of Proper Tooling to discuss the foundational role of STEM education in advanced manufacturing.
- In Wilmington, DE, Department of Labor Secretary Thomas Perez participated in roundtables at RC Fabricators, a steel manufacturer, and Zip Code Wilmington, a nonprofit coding school, focused on the crucial role that apprenticeships play in equipping works with the skills they need to compete in today’s labor market.
- In National Harbor, MD, U.S. Chief Technology Officer Megan Smith is co-creating the vehicles of tomorrow with students from the Arlington Career Center, Georgetown University, the George Washington University, Oxon Hill Middle School, Thurgood Marshall College Fund, the University of the District of Columbia, and the University of Maryland at the Local Motors demonstration facility.
An Administration-Long Focus on American Manufacturing
Entering office in 2009 in the midst of grim economic and financial conditions in the United States and around the world, President Obama took immediate steps to restore balance to the U.S. economy. The Administration recognized that economic stability is rooted in a strong manufacturing sector, and so prioritized manufacturing as a cornerstone of the economic policy agenda. In the fall of 2009, the Administration released the Framework for Revitalizing American Manufacturing, a policy blueprint to revitalize the manufacturing sector.
Over the last 8 years, the Administration has made substantial progress in four core areas: spurring innovation through next-generation technologies; making the U.S. more cost-competitive for production; strengthening skills, communities, and supply chains to attract investment; and capturing our fair share by leveling the playing field, opening access to markets, and promoting U.S. investment.
Four years ago, in response to a recommendation by the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, the Administration created a National Network for Manufacturing Innovation, connecting people, ideas, and technology to solve industry-relevant advanced manufacturing challenges. Now known as Manufacturing USA, the program has grown to nine connected institutes with nearly 1,300 member companies, universities, and non-profits. The Federal government’s commitment of over $600 million to the nine awarded institutes has been matched by over $1.3 billion in non-Federal resources from across industry, academia, and state government. More institutes, representing more than $800 million in additional Federal and non-Federal resources, are on the way and will keep the Administration on track to meet the President’s goal of launching 15 Manufacturing USA institutes before the end of the Administration.
New Steps Being Announced by the Administration Today
Federal announcements in support of Manufacturing Day being made today are:
- The National Economic Council is releasing a new report on the state of the manufacturing sector, including new findings that illustrate the rise in advanced technology skills among manufacturing workers and the increasingly technology-driven nature of this sector, and highlights the Administration’s efforts over the last 8 years to strengthen the competitiveness of American manufacturing. The report finds that a strong manufacturing sector is vital to a growing innovative economy, and notes:
- Workers employed in manufacturing earn 20 percent higher than the median income and, even when holding all other factors equal, it is clear that workers in the manufacturing sector earn a pay premium.
- The manufacturing sector houses a great deal of innovative activity, with 75 percent of private sector research and development, 60 percent of all U.S. R&D employees, and the vast majority of patents issued, despite representing only 12 percent of the GDP.
- Manufacturing activity generates positive spillover benefits, because the know-how and capabilities gained in making things is a key ingredient in continued leadership in design, product development, and innovation.
- Since the Great Recession, manufacturing has grown at nearly twice the pace of the economy overall, marking the longest period where manufacturing has outpaced U.S. economic output in 50 years.
- Analysis by the President's Council of Economic Advisers suggests that cyclical factors do not fully explain manufacturing's job gains, as the job gains between 2010 and early 2014 are about 500,000 above and beyond what would be associated with the historical cyclical pattern.
- The interagency Advanced Manufacturing National Program Office is building on the Secretary of Commerce’s announcement of Manufacturing USA, the new public name for the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation, by launching ManufacturingUSA.com. This new website will be the central portal for learning about upcoming events, technology innovations, and industry news coming from the Manufacturing USA institutes.
- The Department of Energy has recently announced a notice of intent to invest over $30 million in hydrogen and fuel cell projects that will leverage national lab consortia launched under the Energy Department's Energy Materials Network (EMN). The EMN consortia make unique, world-class capabilities at the national laboratories more accessible to industry and academia, facilitating collaborations that will expedite the development of advanced materials, in support of the President's advanced manufacturing and Materials Genome initiatives.
- The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), in collaboration with Bradley University, together with sponsors Caterpillar, Bechtel, and Brick & Mortar Ventures, is announcing two new phases of its 3D-Printed Habitat Challenge, representing new funding of $2.5 million. Phase 2 will launch immediately to advance materials composition fundamental to manufacturing extraterrestrial habitats using mission recycled materials and/or local indigenous materials. Phase 3 will open the summer of 2017, targeting the autonomous manufacturing of the habitats using 3D Printed technology.
- The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), building on five pilot awards announced in September 2016, plans to launch a Federal Funding Opportunity of approximately $4 million to embed personnel from MEP centers at up to 4 more Manufacturing USA institutes by the end of the year. The awards will cultivate enduring collaborations among small U.S. manufacturers, the institutes, and MEP centers to develop strong innovation ecosystems across the manufacturing supply chain.
- The National Science Foundation (NSF) is announcing a new call for research proposals to address critical fundamental research needs in advanced manufacturing, especially proposals that will enable innovations in one or more of the Manufacturing USA institutes’ focus areas and leverage the facilities, infrastructure and member companies of an institute. NSF is also announcing a new call for research proposals on the advanced biomanufacturing of therapeutic cells to enable the manufacturing of reproducible, cost-effective and high-potency cells with predictable biological efficacy. NSF anticipates funding up to 10 awards in advanced biomanufacturing of therapeutic cells, totaling $5 million.
- The Department of Veterans Affairs Center for Innovation is collaborating with America Makes and 3D Veterans to expand the 3D Veterans Bootcamp, a program that provides Veterans with technical training in 3D printing and design skills to accelerate designs to market. The training will prepare over 400 Veterans and transitioning service members per year for careers in advanced manufacturing and provide guidance and resources for those wishing to launch their own business. With a successful pilot program in San Antonio, 3D Veterans is announcing new boot camps in Los Angeles, CA; Carson, CA; San Francisco, CA; Philadelphia, PA; and El Paso, TX.
Additional Actions in Response to the Administration’s Call to Action
Today’s actions focus on inspiring and preparing the next generation of manufacturers and STEM practitioners, as well as supporting entrepreneurs manufacturing their first product in the United States.
Educating and Training the Next Generation of Manufacturers
Manufacturing USA prepares America’s workers for jobs in manufacturing, where each institute acts as a “teaching factory” to provide unique opportunities for training students and workers at all levels. Institutes also provide assets to help small manufacturers and other member companies access cutting-edge capabilities and equipment needed to design, test, and pilot new products and manufacturing processes. Today, many of the Manufacturing USA institutes are announcing new education and workforce training initiatives:
- America Makes, with the Lanterman Group, is launching a new training initiative, Advanced Curriculum in Additive Manufacturing, Engineering and Design Innovation (ACADEMI)—an immersive, hands-on training environment, integrating skills from a variety of disciplines into a Design for Additive Manufacturing Bootcamp; available to America Makes’ members at its Innovation Factory in Youngstown, OH, in the spring of 2017.
- The Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute (DMDII) is announcing new strategic alliances with the National Coalition of Advanced Technical Centers (NCATC) and the American Indian Higher Education Consortium to rapidly connect institute technologies and workforce development resources with training providers, enhancing community college curriculum for digital transformations in manufacturing. DMDII, with NIST MEP, is immediately expanding its Train the Trainer program by 50 percent to include an additional five centers, educating manufacturing practitioners on digital manufacturing and enabling MEP Centers to assist small- and medium-sized manufacturers in adopting this next-generation technology.
The Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation (IACMI) is announcing a series of four hands-on training workshops, to be held in 2017, aimed at accelerating the adoption of cutting-edge, energy-efficient technologies within the composites ecosystem. The first workshop in May 2017 will demonstrate the latest advanced manufacturing techniques with state-of-the-art equipment and experts to answer questions in real time. IACMI expects 200 manufacturers from more than 20 states to attend.
IACMI and Lightweight Innovations for Tomorrow (LIFT) will jointly develop and launch a lightweighting “learning hub” and information portal by the end of this year. The open source portal will provide content and courses, lab activities, and curricula to help educators at all levels infuse information on lightweight materials, technologies, and processes into educational pathways to jobs in the industry.
- LIFT, in a new collaboration with IACMI, will roll-out MakerMinded in 150 middle and high schools across Kentucky and Tennessee this school year. MakerMinded, a state-wide school outreach program, aims to create the next generation of manufacturing leaders by infusing today’s learning infrastructure with a manufacturing mindset and connecting engaging educational activities and programs with students through a digital platform. The MakerMinded launch in Kentucky begins in January 2017, initially with 50 middle and high schools, and then with state-wide participation in the next school year. Collaborators include the Kentucky Association of Manufacturers, Kentucky Education & Workforce Development Cabinet, the Foundation for Kentucky Industry, Kentucky Department of Education, Cabinet for Economic Development, UK College of Education, Kentucky Community & Technical College System, and Tennessee Tech University iCube. MakerMinded in Tennessee, managed by the Tennessee STEM Innovation Network, will expand to include 100 new schools.
- Also this month, NextFlex kicks off a four-week scalable pilot for project-based learning program with Lincoln High School in San Jose, CA, that blends technology and entrepreneurship with education and career pathway learning objectives for 11th and 12th graders. The program includes collaboration with a variety of stakeholders, including Jabil, the City of San Jose, Work2Future, various bay area community colleges, and FabLabTV. NextFlex is also announcing an investment of nearly $200,000 in the creation of innovative learn-and-earn programs at the community college level across the country, which will launch this fall, integrating partners from local industry, academic, and government organizations to synchronize education and career pathways with the talent needs of advanced manufacturers.
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and others are committing to educating and training the next generation of manufacturers—from students at MIT to those across the state of Massachusetts and around the world—with new courses and resources promoting maker culture and laboratory-factories providing hands-on experiences for integrated photonics.
- MIT will provide introductory maker training to the entire MIT Class of 2020 (1,100 freshmen) in 3D printing, laser cutting, and hand tools, including access to funding for materials and machine time and the ability to join 10 unique freshman maker communities. MIT is expanding the availability of manufacturing education to students around the world by launching next week the first manufacturing-oriented massive open online course of its kind, the Fundamentals of Manufacturing Processes, which will introduce students to a wide range of manufacturing processes and explain the fundamental principles and practices of manufacturing at scale. In addition, the MIT Sloan School of Business Innovation Period, an intensive week of experiential leadership training later this month, will include for the first time an online-interactive class and public seminar on Shaping the Future of Work, focused on workplace design to prepare the middle-skills workforce for rewarding careers in advanced manufacturing.
- To build out an innovation ecosystem, and as part of the AIM Photonics Manufacturing USA Institute, MIT, in collaboration with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, Mass MEP and MA Community Colleges, will pilot the first integrated laboratory-factory for AIM Photonics Academy. This site will provide hands-on manufacturing education and training in Massachusetts, including equipment funded by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The laboratory-factory will help teach advanced manufacturing and Integrated Photonics concepts to students and researchers from AIM Photonics partners in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
In addition, the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) Grand Challenge Scholars Program (GCSP) inspires the next generation of STEM practitioners and manufacturers by linking curricular and extra-curricular programs to tackle Grand Challenges for Engineering, such as making solar energy economical and engineering better medicines. Today, six NAE GCSP schools are doubling-down on their commitments by expanding their programs and nine new schools are launching their inaugural GCSP cohorts:
- Arizona State University commits to graduating 20 GCSP scholars this year (2016-2017), up from 12 GCSP scholars in 2016, and at least 25 next year (2017-2018).
- Bucknell University will graduate 17 GCSP scholars in 2017, nearly three times the number of the first graduating class in 2016, and will scale up to 20 Scholars by 2019.
- Georgia Tech commits to recruiting 35 GCSP scholars in the 2016-2017 school year, up from two participants in its inaugural year.
- Louisiana Tech is announcing $25,000 in new scholarship funds to grow and expand the educational and broader impact opportunities for its GCSP scholars.
- The State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry commits in 2016-2017 to sending 15 GCSP scholars to a humanitarian engineering field course at Rancho Mastatal in Costa Rica to research and create renewable energy and natural building design technologies.
- The University of Southern California Viterbi School of Engineering commits to doubling the number of participating GCSP scholars to 50 over the next two years, providing each graduating GCSP scholar with a cash prize at graduation, and creating a fund that GCSP scholars can access to support their GSCP activities.
- The nine schools launching inaugural GCSP programs include: the Catholic University of America (launching in 2016-2017), Clemson University (with the goal of engaging 50 percent of all college students in the GCSP by 2025), the Colorado School of Mines (20 GCSP scholars in the 2016-2017 school year, with the equivalent of $15,000 in program support per year ongoing), the George Fox University College of Engineering (seven GCSP scholars in 2016-17 year, with the aim to increase by 300 to 400 percent over the upcoming 3-5 years to reach over 10 percent of the college’s student population by 2021), Miami University (20 GCSP scholars per year beginning in 2019), Texas A&M (25 GCSP scholars in Fall 2016, including support for programming and participation in the next Global Grand Challenges Summit), the University of California, San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering (15 GCSP scholars, including project support for the inaugural class of scholars), the University of Idaho (12 GCSP scholars in 2016, with a goal of scaling up to 18-24 GCSP scholars by 2017), and the University of North Dakota College of Engineering and Mines (10 GCSP scholars in 2016, and will provide each GCSP scholar an annual $1,000 stipend and up to $6,000 in additional support for their GCSP activities).
Additional Steps to Support Making and Manufacturing
Today, local organizations across the country are announcing steps to help more students and adults acquire the skills and resources to tinker, invent, and eventually manufacture their ideas at scale, including:
- Abricate.com is launching a complementary online help desk, where anyone may ask questions and receive answers on how to manufacture their ideas, be it a napkin sketch or a fully-specified design. This help desk will assist makers in taking the next step to build their projects with higher quality and new methods, because they will have access to a community of maker experts with diverse areas of expertise.
- Branch Technology, is announcing new signature sponsorship from Techmer PM, Chattanooga State, and the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce for 3D printing the winning design from a worldwide competition for a 1,000 sq. ft. house, representing the first printed house in the United States and the first freeform printed house in the world.
- Carnegie Mellon University is announcing the launch of 30 in 30, an outreach initiative to engage Carnegie Mellon faculty, staff and students to connect with 30 small companies over a 30 day period to support the development of new breakthrough manufacturing technologies. Working with Catalyst Connection, the Pittsburgh region's manufacturing extension partner, this initiative seeks to empower companies by exposing them to new materials processes and the capacity of next generation robotics.
- Global Attain Advancement will open a makerspace in Central Austin, TX, in March 2017 to bridge the gap between ideation, prototyping, and local small-batch manufacturing.
- Aki Development, LLC, a tribally chartered and operated business on the Leech Lake band of Ojibwe Reservation, and manufacturer subsidiary Saga Solar, SBC will work with Leech Lake Tribal College to develop and implement a curriculum for students focused on photovoltaic manufacturing and installation. This collaboration with the local Tribal community college will train the next generation of solar manufacturers, encourage Indigenous engineering and research, and lead to economic and environmental sustainability in this local community.
- LIFT and IACMI, two of the Manufacturing USA institutes, are announcing a combined investment of nearly $50 million over the next 24 months in the construction, infrastructure upgrades, and new manufacturing equipment capabilities of their shared manufacturing facility in Detroit, MI. These investments will allow their members to conduct research and development projects in both lightweight metals and composites and provide hands-on training opportunities.
- The Manufacturers Association of Central New York and over 30 manufacturers in Upstate New York, working with the New York State Department of Labor, will announce the launch of at least 30 manufacturing apprenticeships in five different occupations by the end of this month.
- The Manufacturing Consortium of Long Island is launching an online database for Long Island manufacturers, strengthening the state’s supply chain by connecting Long Island manufacturers and identifying any gaps in local capabilities.
- The Open Source Hardware Association is launching an Open Source Hardware Certification, which will make it easier for the public to identify open source hardware and expand the reach of open hardware in different fields and businesses. This certification will benefit both consumers, by making it easy to identify truly open source hardware in the marketplace, and creators, by providing specific guidelines so that entrepreneurs, makers, and manufacturers may confidently declare their hardware projects and products as open source.
- Purdue Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), in collaboration with the Indiana Department of Workforce Development and Indiana Economic Development Corporation, is launching its second round of new manufacturing workforce training for up to 20 participants, where every graduate of the program has been guaranteed employment by a local manufacturer. Purdue MEP is also a key entity in helping launch a Women in Manufacturing chapter in Indiana to build community, address issues, and create workforce development for future generations.
- Today, the Urban Manufacturing Alliance, in partnership with the Abell Foundation, the City of Baltimore, Etsy, Google, the Greater Milwaukee Foundation, the Kauffman Foundation, and the Pratt Center for Community Development, is initiating efforts to create a snapshot of urban manufacturing activity across 13 urban areas. This effort will explore the linkages between manufacturing and the equity imperative, with a particular focus on the job creation tied to small-batch production and the maker movement. These findings will be published in a State of Urban Manufacturing report, with lasting impact through the formation of new coalitions in the urban areas.
- Vocademy, in partnership with Bourns, Inc., will sponsor eight student “makerships,” enabling local students in Riverside, CA to spend three months learning about and practicing advanced manufacturing skills.
Strengthening the K-12 STEM Education Pipeline
A robust manufacturing sector relies on skilled workers trained in the fundamentals of science, technology, education, and mathematics (STEM). Today, organizations across the country are committing to strengthening the STEM education pipeline from kindergarten through high school:
- The Boy Scouts of America’s Exploring program is teaming up with Cognizant and Maker Ed to bring the popular maker movement to more youth across the country by introducing Maker Exploring posts. The posts will be “maker clubs,” featuring hands-on, STEM-focused activities designed to foster creativity and problem-solving skills among youth. Initial launches in four pilot markets – Austin, TX; Detroit, MI; Chicago, IL; and San Diego, CA – are planned for 2017.
- BioBuilder, a nationwide educational initiative, is announcing a new partnership with Dracut Public Schools in Massachusetts and Amino Labs, based in Canada, to provide a hands-on biomanufacturing curriculum to hundreds of students this year. The partnership will establish a middle-school Maker Space with equipment and open-access teaching activities that train students to use biology as a manufacturing platform, thus strengthening the STEM education pipeline.
- In the Chicago area, CKL Engineers, LLC commits to launching an initiative to provide support for and increase the number of students, especially African-American students, in STEM-based education programs. CKL Engineers, LLC will provide local schools with technology upgrades, starting with St. John de La Salle Catholic Academy by the end of 2016, provide internships and traineeships for college engineering students, and provide scholarships in partnership with not-for-profit organizations for incoming freshmen majoring in STEM fields.
- Formlabs is announcing the “Innovate & Educate Challenge,” which will award a Form 2 3D printer to the most inspiring 3D printing lesson plan. Formlabs will also launch a STEM and Arts education program with Scholastic that will promote access to 3D printing technology and curriculum. To encourage inventive creativity in young people, Formlabs will also donate another Form 2 printer to the Smithsonian’s Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation where it will be used in the Spark! Labs hands-on invention workshop.