Community Update
November 2021
MSSC Updates
Biden’s Build Back Better Framework Proposes $40 Billion Investment in Higher Ed and Workforce  

On October 28, President Biden announced his framework for the Build Back Better Act. The major takeaway of this sweeping bill for the MSSC Community is that it proposes a $40 billion investment into the nation’s higher education and workforce economy; includes a 50% increase in the Labor Department’s annual workforce development spending for each of the next 5 years; includes $4.6 billion for Industry and Sector Partnerships; and would increase in the maximum Pell Grant by $550 for more than 5 million students. The corresponding legislative text released on Oct. 28 is not final and will be reviewed by the House Rules Committee before being voted on by the full House of Representatives later this Fall. For more information follow this link.
EDA Good Jobs Challenge Webinar with ACT
On October 5, MSSC and ACT’s Workforce Group joined forces on an informational webinar to support strategies and solutions for workforce ecosystems exploring the U.S. Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) “Good Jobs Challenge.” Designed to get more Americans back to work through boosting regional systems and their employer-driven programs to connect skill needs, workers can land and keep quality jobs while advancing along a career pathway. The EDA is still accepting proposals through January 2022. For a copy of the recording, please contact Catherine Feeney, Senior Marketing Director, MSSC
Community News
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine visits MSSC Center, Richmond Heights Secondary School

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine visited Richmond Heights Secondary School in Richmond Heights, OH, on Oct. 11th to see some of the new and exciting academic programs being offered to students through a grant awarded by the Ohio Department of Education – including MSSC’s CPT+ program involving Amatrol’s hands-on Skill Boss Manufacturing Device. The school’s MSSC authorized instructor, Joshua Patty, walked Governor DeWine through the benefits his students are receiving from not only the CPT 4.0 online learning materials, but also through the CPT+ experience of using the theoretical skills in practice via the Amatrol device. During DeWine’s visit, Patty credited the initial sense of exposure to advanced manufacturing that comes by way of the CPT 4.0 and CPT+ programs as a steppingstone for his students to then see what their local area offers for advanced manufacturing employment opportunities.

Along with providing his students with in-demand skills that could lead them to a high-paying job immediately upon graduation, Patty highlighted that the training program also cuts costs for the companies who utilize MSSC certified workers. Echoing the notion that young students most likely won’t have a firm grasp on what makes up the manufacturing industry until they see it firsthand, DeWine expressed that he was impressed by the innovative programs offered to the Richmond Heights students – “It’s not just excitement [for the students], but then it’s giving them the tools that they need to start in the program,” he said.
Certificant Spotlight
Before enrolling in a MSSC-partnered program with Ivy Tech Community College out of Sellersburg, IN, Robin Brohm, a CLT certificant, was unaware of the supply chain industry’s underlying scope— but she now plans on pursuing a degree in the supply chain management field to complement her CLT certificate. Per her reflection, she now identifies how fundamentals presented in the CLT e-learning modules play out in everyday real-life scenarios, ranging from national labor statistics to temporary beef patty shortages at a local fast-food joint, and has the confidence to share necessary context to those personally affected.
A busy mother of three, enrolling in a fully remote MSSC program with Ivy Tech allowed her to progress at her own comfortable pace and provided the ability to go back and re-cover areas whenever she deemed it necessary. An additional benefit of the ProctorU testing option she noted was being able to test in her own home, allowing her to avoid the cost and logistics of hiring a babysitter! “Having a worldwide-accredited, industry standard certification — along with my various skills throughout my background — have given me the knowledge and confidence to excel in any facet of the manufacturing industry,” she says.
Policy & Trends
US Reshoring is Booming (and Will Be For Some Time)

A Series of New Reports Predict a Massive Wave of US Reshoring

The US is on track to undergo a massive trend of reshoring, as indicated by a duo of recently released reports. A report by the Reshoring Initiative claims the U.S. is on track to see an unprecedented reshoring surge with about 62,500 jobs concentrating around chips, EV batteries, PPE, pharmaceuticals, and rare earths, and over 220,000 job openings come as a direct result from a national push to strengthen the domestic supply chain. Thomas Index’s 2021 State of North American Manufacturing Report reveals with US manufactures are increasingly turning to reshoring to deal with supply chain problems, such an impact from US-based producers could potentially contribute $443 billion to the U.S. economy. Among other findings, the Thomas report confirms that there was a substantial increase in demand in Q1 2021 versus 2020 for selected raw materials, traditional manufacturing services, and advanced manufacturing technologies across key sectors.

A New Group Effort to Boost Support Efforts for Reshoring Enterprises

In addition to the reports, IndustryWeek, in collaboration with the Association for Manufacturing and Technology (AMT), the American Industrial Acquisition Corporation (AIAC), Helpful Engineering, the Reshoring Initiative, and Gardner Business Media, announced on 10/18 the launch of “The Onshoring Project.” With this new initiative, the overall goal is to “develop and share new metrics, new tools and practices that will shift the focus of original equipment manufacturer executives from an almost sole reliance on piece-price in sourcing decisions, a practice that has led to disastrous impacts to the health of U.S. manufacturing, the country’s overall balance of trade and employment.” There is an open invitation for any company, OEM and/or SME, or organization to visit the website for more information on the collaborative project, as well as to positively contribute to the cause when appropriate. 
Connected Work Technology Empowers Manufacturers to Gain Insight into their Frontlines

Facing pressure from multiple fronts (new environmental regulations and demands from employees, customers, and investors) to pivot into more sustainable models, many manufactures are looking for ways to restructure their environmental, social and governance (ESG) initiatives. Yasmin Zarabi, Head of ESG and General Counsel at Parsable, who was one of three presenters for a webinar hosted by Parsable and Industry Week last month that addressed this area of concern, noted a study that claims that over 70 percent of millennials will consider a company’s ESG policy when applying for a position and this is a major factor that plays into the current U.S. labor shortage.

The webinar placed a high focus on connected work technology — an area that Parsable provides solutions for — that empowers frontline workers with modern digital tools to improve productivity, quality, safety and sustainability at scale, while also providing greater visibility into the manufacturing frontlines for those who can then collect and analyze the relevant data to better improve the company’s processes. This technology will tackle the existing silos between top floor management and frontline operations to better address and tackle ESG initiatives. Along with providing a more environmentally sustainable operation, connected worker technology can also aid manufacturing companies with quality control, safety inspections and audits, trainings and micro-learnings, among other areas of operations. The free webinar is available to be watched here.
Key Areas to Address in Evaluation of the Manufacturing Workforce Shortage

According to a new report published in IndustryWeek by Paul Wellener of Deloitte, the American manufacturing industry saw a loss of about 1.4 million jobs due to the pandemic but has since regained 75% of its former stature. While this percentage of regrowth is encouraging, Wellener notes the manufacturing sector lags behind other industries in filling positions. August 2021 saw a historic posting of 892,000 manufacturing jobs, but only added 31,000 net payrolls. In his report, Wellener notes that this lag in reestablishing the manufacturing workforce reflects a convergence of factors but highlights four in particular: “an empowered workforce is reassessing job prospects,” “wages and benefits could be a deciding factor,” “retail and tech giants may have stronger employment offerings and branding,” and “manufacturing hiring criteria may be too restrictive.” To avoid such stagnant growth, Wellener underlines that the need for a more competitive talent strategy to hire and retain critical workers has remained a stubborn constant focus area for manufacturers.
Deputy Secretary of Commerce Highlights DoC/EDA’s Good Jobs Challenge Grant Opportunity

Deputy Secretary of Commerce Don Graves headlined a 11/3 webinar hosted by Manufacturing Renaissance (MR), a Chicago-based nonprofit organization, that highlighted initiatives being taken on both national and localized levels to address on-going steps to diversify the manufacturing workforce while also noting the greater ripple effect that manufacturing can have on a local economy. Among various national initiatives, Graves highlighted the EDA’s Good Jobs Challenge as an opportunity for the U.S. to move in the right direction by increasing capital for entrepreneurs across the board in all U.S. communities. In addition to addressing the need for increased awareness of possible manufacturing-oriented career paths, a highlighted point was that the nation’s strategy for increasing its manufacturing competitiveness must also contain elements dedicated to equity. In aiming to diversify the manufacturing workforce, one such push is for employers to place higher focus on employees’ skill and competences gained through sector-based training instead of only post-secondary degrees. MSSC has conveyed to the MSSC Community our unique qualifications to serve as a participant in grant applications under EDA’s Good Jobs Challenge and an on-demand webinar on the topic is available for download.
Shifting Employer Attitudes Toward CTE
Advance CTE new report, Shifting the Skills Conversation: Employer Attitudes and Outcomes of Career Technical Education, provides tangible data points on employer attitudes toward CTE and the positive return on investment CTE experiences provide for business and economic growth. Based on a national survey of more than 300 professionals actively involved in hiring decisions in in-demand fields, these new findings demonstrate that employers strongly support and see direct value in CTE.  
FCC Approves Additional Emergency Connectivity Fund Applications

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced $1.1 billion in new commitments as part of the Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF)’s second wave of funding distribution. The funding will cover 2.4 million devices and 1.9 million broadband connections. The approved projects will benefit learners and staff at 2,471 schools, and the patrons of 205 libraries. The FCC has approved over half of the applications filed during the program’s first application window and it is expected that remaining qualified applications will be approved in the coming weeks.
President Biden Issues Executive Order to Advance Educational Equity

President Biden issued an Executive Order creating a new White House Initiative on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence, and Economic Opportunity for Black Americans. The order enumerates several actions that the Biden Administration has already taken or plans to take to provide greater economic opportunity for Black families and communities, close educational achievement gaps for Black learners, improve health outcomes for these communities, and outlines a number of steps the administration plans to take regarding criminal justice reform among other elements. Importantly, the EO envisions CTE as being a key way to achieve some of these objectives.

With flagging enrollment, community colleges are under more pressure than ever to find ways to provide career-relevant skills to their students. A new study from Harvard University's Project on Workforce points to how colleges can keep their workforce edge leveraging untapped fundraising potential, cultivating close employer relationships, emphasizing foundational skills training, and collecting data on job quality are useful for community colleges and nontraditional providers alike. You can read the full white paper here.
The U.S. Department of Commerce continues to celebrate Manufacturing Month by announcing a $3.6 Million Grant for a Workforce Development Facility in Cleveland.
Coalition for Career Development Center
December 8, 3-4:30 pm ET
Virtual Policy Forum on Providing Professional Career Advisement
ACTE’s Career Tech Vision
December 1-4, 2021
Hybrid - Virtual and In-Person – New Orleans

National Apprenticeship Week
November 15-21, 2021