Community Update

April 2023

MSSC Updates

Save the Date: MSSC 2023 Instructors Conference

Community News

Automate 2023 - May 22-25 (Detroit)

Policy & Trends

U.S. Companies Reshored 364,000 Jobs Last Year

New Short-Term Pell Proposal Released

CEOs' top 3 worries: Workforce, workforce, workforce

Funding Opportunity Announced: CHIPS for America

Resources & Events

Upcoming Conferences

About MSSC

The Manufacturing Skill Standards Council (MSSC) ®, an industry-led 501(c)3 non-profit, is America's leader in training and certifying foundational technical competencies for front-line technicians for in-demand, higher wage, higher skill jobs in advanced manufacturing and supply chain logistics.

Technicians with MSSC Certifications are qualified for 11.3 million jobs in front-line production, material handling, and distribution. 84% of executives surveyed agree there is a talent shortage in U.S. manufacturing. MSSC is helping industry close that gap as they prepare to manufacture the future!

Learn More!

MSSC Updates

In 1998, the federal National Skill Standards Board endorsed the Manufacturing Skill Standards Council as the “Voluntary Partnership” of industry, labor and education responsible for defining the industry-wide skill standards for front-line production workers.


Now commemorating 25 years of upskilling America’s workforce, MSSC has grown far beyond initial expectations into a national institution of over 2000 Authorized Assessment Centers and 3300+ Authorized Instructors. It is through collaborative efforts with our many strategic partners that thousands of individuals across the county have been given the necessary skills and credentials to secure a path for in-demand and lucrative careers. 


To open our 2023 Instructors Conference, we’ll be highlighting some of our most impactful partners, dating back to our founding. We hope you’ll be able to join us for this fully virtual and free event. BE ON THE LOOK OUT FOR THE REGISTRATION LINK AND THE DAY’S AGENDA – COMING SOON TO YOUR INBOX!

As part of this event, we want to open the floor to those on the frontline of MSSC Training and Credentialing - student, instructors, administrators, and industry partners. If you're interested in sharing your MSSC Impact Story, reach out to Tyler Kennedy, MSSC Manager of Strategic Initiatives!

Community News

The Manufacturing Skill Standards Council will be exhibiting at this year’s Automate conference as part of the FANUC Education Pavilion (May 22-25 in Detroit)

As the leading automation showcase in North America, the hands-on, front-row-seat experiences offered here are second to none. With more than 700 exhibitors, 200 speakers and 25,000 registrants, Automate’s gathering of expertise and experience is unmatched.


Walking the show floor and visiting exhibitor booths is FREE - click here to register to attend! Conference sessions, exams, and social events are an additional fee.

FANUC America, the leading supplier of CNCs, robotics, and ROBOMACHINEs, and MSSC, the long-established U.S. leader in certifying front-line production technicians with foundational skills in advanced manufacturing and logistics, have aligned to co-market the stackability of their respective industry-recognized certifications. This alliance represents a major step to address the acute shortage of skilled industrial robotics and automation operators.


Both organizations offer their certification assessments through NOCTI/Nocti Business Solutions (NBS), the leader in industry-developed and recognized certification assessments that follow international standards for personnel certification (ISO 17024). NOCTI/NBS have developed and validated the end-of-course assessments for both FANUC and MSSC to certify their technicians. This partnership creates a streamlined approach for schools and industry partners when administering the certifications.

MSSC-sponsored Titan Robotics team Competes at FIRST Robotics Competition Championship

Titan Robotics, of Alexandria, VA, competed at the FIRST Robotics Competition Championship in Houston this month. Earlier in the month, they won the prestigious Impact award at the Chesapeake District Championship, which resulted in them receiving a bid to Houston. Read more about this MSSC-sponsored team here.

Policy & Trends

U.S. Companies Reshored 364,000 Jobs Last Year, Report Says

American companies reshored more jobs than expected from overseas last year - a record 364,000 jobs - according to a report to be published last month by the Reshoring Initiative. These numbers include jobs that had previously been done in other countries and jobs in the U.S. created by companies owned by foreign entities. The report credited a "huge surge in EV batteries and chips" along with a continuing trend of increased jobs added in industries such as electrical equipment, appliances and components; chemicals; transportation equipment; and medical equipment and supplies. The Inflation Reduction Act and Chips Act, passed in Congress last year, were also credited for the increase. Read the full report here. The Reshoring Initiative founder Harry Moser's Fox Business Interview last year remains relevant - watch it here.

Biden Administration Releases Proposed 2024 Budget

The Biden Administration 2024 budget proposal show a commitment to bolstering workforce and training programs across agencies - including a number of new proposals and funding increases for the Department of Education. Notably, the plan includes: funding to support free community college, an increase to the maximum Pell Grant award, greater access to financial aid for Dreamers, and an increase in the funding for Perkins Career and Technical Education state grants

The overall budget totals nearly $7 trillion dollars and includes proposals to expand access to childcare and preschool, establish 12 weeks of national paid family and medical leave, and make Affordable Care Act Subsidy enhancements permanent. More details can be found here.

NIST releases CHIPS for America - Workforce Development Planning Guide

The National Institute of Technology and Standards released a Workforce Development Guide in late March to be used as a resource for CHIPS Incentives Applicants. The CHIPS Incentives Program aims to strengthen U.S. economic and national security, including economic resilience and competitiveness, through long-term growth and economic sustainability in the domestic semiconductor industry. In connection with industry specific training and workforce development resources, the guide includes both the MSSC Pre-Apprenticeship Program and the Industrial Manufacturing Technician Apprenticeship - both of which incorporate the CPT 4.0 certification program. See the full report here.

New Short-Term Pell Proposal Released

The House Education and Workforce Committee Ranking Member Bobby Scott (D-VA) introduced the “Jobs to Compete Act,” legislation that seeks to expand federal Pell grant eligibility for certain postsecondary CTE programs. This is the third Congressional proposal on this topic which indicates significant interest amongst lawmakers on this issue. More on the legislative proposal can be found here.

OCTAE Publishes New Apprenticeship Guidance

Recently, ED’s Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education (OCTAE) published new guidance regarding Perkins V and how the law could be used to support apprenticeship programs and related activities. Advance CTE is continuing to analyze this non-regulatory guidance and will continue to work with the CTE community on this issue. Details can be found here.

CEOs' top 3 worries: Workforce, workforce, workforce

Workforce challenges topped CEOs' concerns on the Global Leadership Forecast 2023 for the first time in two decades, with 59% concerned about attracting and keeping top talent. The survey of more than 15,000 CEOs, business leaders and human resources professionals around the world also noted that executives are dwelling on the need to build the next generation of leaders and keep employees engaged. Survey can be found here.

Funding Opportunity Announced: CHIPS for America

As part of the bipartisan CHIPS and Science Act, the Department of Commerce’s CHIPS for America initiative will invest $50 billion to revitalize the domestic semiconductor industry, protect U.S. national and economic security, preserve U.S. leadership in the industries of the future, create good-paying jobs, and build strong communities.

 On February 28, 2023, the CHIPS Program Office released its first funding opportunity to boost domestic semiconductor manufacturing, solidify America’s technological leadership, and promote U.S. economic and national security. The first funding opportunity details the application process and outlines how the department will evaluate applications, including a primary focus on how projects advance U.S. economic and national security. Applications will also be evaluated for commercial viability, financial strength, technical feasibility and readiness, workforce development, and efforts to spur inclusive economic growth. Read more about this funding opportunity


Unlocking Career Success Website

Unlocking Career Success is an interagency initiative chaired by Dr. Jill Biden, in collaboration with the Secretaries of Education, Lab and Commerce. It reimagines how our nation’s high schools prepare all students to thrive in their future careers. This initiative will support public and private sector leaders, government agencies, and other community-based organizations to help students earn postsecondary degrees and industry credentials that employers need, and our economy demands. More information can be found here.

Upskilling Would Persuade Workers to Stay

Eighty percent of U.S. workers surveyed said they feel hopeful about the future of their careers — but not with their current employer, according to research by the University of Phoenix Career Institute. However, some 68% said upskilling opportunities would persuade them to remain with their current employers. Read the article here.

How Augment Reality Can Improve the Employee Experience

Manufacturing companies can retain talent amid a frontline worker shortage by embracing augmented technology to improve the employee experience, writes Rockwell Automation's Rachael Conrad. "Investing in digital technologies such as AR helps drive value through operational efficiencies and instills a greater sense of confidence and competency among workers," Conrad explains. Read the article here.

Resources & Events

Upcoming Events

Skills Summit

May 1-3, 2023, Washington, DC

Sponsored by the National Skills Coalition

Automate 2023

May 22-25, 2023, Detroit, MI

Sponsored by Association for Advancing Automation

Horizons – Without Limits

June 14-15, 2023, New Orleans, LA

Sponsored by Jobs for the Future

Manufacturing Skill Standards Council (MSSC) Website
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