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Leo Reddy presents at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on preparing students for careers 
O n February 22nd, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce hosted a meeting entitled, "Reviving the American Dream by Using Career Development to Prepare All Young Adults for Career Success."  This sold-out meeting in the 250-seat Hall of Flags assembled a host of major business organizations, industry leaders, national education organizations, and career counseling organizations.  The purpose was to generate a whole series of measures to build an "Action Plan" designed to buttress career success for all students as the new central focus of American education.  

Most notable was the leadership being provided by business and industry at this meeting.  In addition to speakers from the U.S. Chamber Foundation, the speakers included Chip Blankenship, CEO of GE Appliances, former MI Governor, John Engler, President of The Business Roundtable, Leo Reddy, Chair and CEO of the industry-led Manufacturing Skill Standards Council, Jeannine Kunz, Director of Professional Development, SME, Crystal Bridgeman, Senior Director of Workforce Development, Siemens Foundation, and Chauncy Lennon, Managing Director of Global Philanthropy, JP Morgan Chase.  Bill Symonds, Director of Global Pathways Institute at Arizona State University, moderated the meeting.

Mr. Reddy described this February 22 convening as "A powerful first step in beginning an employer-led conversation about re-directing American education towards the goal of ensuring that ALL students secure productive employment in their chosen career pathways as efficiently and cost effectively as possible."   He called for a new cohort of highly skilled, certified career development coordinators in all 21,000 high schools in the U.S. to help all students develop personalized education and career plans to prepare them for career success.

Please click here for the official  Press Release.

Mary Batch of Toyota joins MSSC Board of Directors
MSSC is pleased to announce that  Mary Batch, cur rent Assistant Manager of Human Resource Development at Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Texas, Inc. has joined the MSSC Board of Directors. Mary has played a critical role in growing the next workforce generation in technology.
According to MSSC CEO, Leo Reddy, "Mary's creative combination of MSSC Certified Production Technician (CPT) training and credentialing for San Antonio high schoolers with junior and senior year internships has produced a highly successful model for industry-supported internships that should be emulated nationwide."

Mary has been instrumental exposing the youth in San Antonio in STEM initiatives through interactive engagement activities beginning at the middle school level in engineering, multi-skill maintenance and production. Entering into her fifth year with her partnership with Alamo Colleges and the Alamo Academies (National model) and winner of the 2015 Community College Bellwether Award for Workforce Development; she has provided 8 week summer internships for high school students enrolled in the Advanced Manufacturing & Technology Academies in between their junior and senior year  who secure the MSSC CPT Safety and Quality Certificates.  

Prior to Toyota, Mary was an Adjunct Instructor at Palo Alto Community College teaching Industrial Automation Technology to workforce employees for 2 ½ years. In addition, she spent 14 years at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio and the Air Force Research Lab developing biomedical prototypes to assist researchers in their grants and research.
manufacturingPOLICY NEWS

"Apples to Apples" report from Corporation for a Skilled Workforce
  The Corporation for a Skilled Workforce (CSW) issued a report called Apples to Apples which highlights workforce development programs: Please click here to view  Full Report .
It's an update of a 2013 report, but the item of note for the 2016 update is that includes some data on industry certifications and employment outcomes that is usually lacking from these kinds of reports. Highlights:
  •  Workforce programs that offer occupational skills training, especially for industry-recognized certifications tend to show higher outcomes as do those that provide work experience opportunities such as internships.
  • Program Completion, enrollee placement, completer placement, wages, full-time employment with benefits and 6 month retention rates were all significantly higher (9-15%) for programs that offered skills training leading to certification than programs that don't include certification.
  • Average wages for certification program participants were almost $2/hr. more than non-certification programs. At the high end, starting wages were over $3/hr. more for certification program participants.
Unfortunately, the data also shows that only 71 programs (of 259) actually offer skills training leading to certification, despite the clear evidence that it improves outcomes.

President Obama's 2017 budget prioritizes workforce education and training
According to National Skills Coalition (NSC) Skills Blog, "o n February 9, President Obama unveiled his fiscal year (FY)  2017 budget request , outlining the Administration's spending priorities for federal programs and activities, beginning October 1, 2017."

"The FY 2017 budget proposes significant new investments in education and training, renews requests from the President's 2016 budget request and includes enhanced support for existing programs. The budget includes substantial changes to the Pell Grant program, calls for Carl D. Perkins Act reauthorization, and proposes Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) reauthorization and a significant increase to the state block grant. The President also proposes investments in expanding apprenticeship,  significant increases in funding for workforce data investments, and a focus on "opportunity youth."

While most of the proposals in  the budget request are unlikely to be part of the final 2017 funding bill, the President's request does evidence the administration's priorities over their last year in office.

Please click here for the full  National Skills Blog article.

The skills president - NSC responds to State of the Union address
K ermit Kaleba, Federal Policy Director at National Skills Coalition (NSC), issued the following statement in response to President Obama's final State of the Union address:

"For seven years, President Obama has been a skills president. From the critical reemployment and retraining initiatives created under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, to his signing of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act revitalizing our nation's workforce system, he has consistently recognized the value of education and training in supporting economic growth and shared prosperity. He's articulated a strong vision for making sure that federal training programs are job-driven and accountable for results, and backed that up with transformative investments to expand apprenticeship, community college partnerships, and other proven strategies."

"Last night he built on this record by renewing his America's College Promise proposal, which would support two years of post-secondary education and training for all Americans."

Please click below for the full NSC response

"A New Year, a New Commitment" to STEM report from HuffPost Business
A ccording to the January 2016 HuffPost Business Report, "our world is changing rapidly and the skills needed to be successful in today's job market are not the same as the ones needed a decade -- or even five years -- ago. The professional landscape has changed and continues to change drastically, and so must the way we prepare our young people for it. 

For example, Change the Equation's research has shown  that despite being the first generation of "digital natives," millennials simply aren't savvy in using technology to solve complex problems. And they -- and their employers -- are feeling it. An Association of American Colleges and Universities poll from last year found only 46 percent of four-year college graduates and 37 percent of employers said grads were well prepared to stay current on ne w technologies. Further, while 56 percent of grads felt they were prepared for working with numbers and statistics, only 28 percent of employers felt similarly. Skills in tec hnology, in particular, once confined to people with job titles like computer programmer, software developer or network administrator, are now all but ubiquitous across today's economy. 

Workers need more knowledge and skills than ever before -- in all areas of STEM, not just technology. We have a responsibility to give young people a strong foundation in these fields as early as possible so they can pursue whatever career options are most appealing to them. 

Industry Week "Skills Gap" webinar report
Industry Week  recently hosted a Skills Gap webinar  detailing specific data on the looming skills gap and gave recommendations to address the issue, including Skills Certifications which "empower companies to partner with education based on industry demands and third-party validation."
Major data highlights related to the manufacturing community were:
  • 2.7 million baby boomers to retire from 2015-2025
  • Turnover for warehouse personnel is 45-60%
  • National Association of Manufacturers (NAM MI) report estimates that companies may be losing as much as 11% of net earnings due to unfilled positions
  • While millennials are the most educated generation, they are earning less
Please click here to view the full Industry Week  Skills Gap Webinar

The Reshoring Initiative Call to Action on Reshoring of Manufacturing
At the end of last year, Boston Consulting Group's report, Reshoring of Manufacturing to the U.S. Gains Momentum created quite a stir in the media, with even the Chinese media acknowledging "Chinese manufacturers losing cost advantages over US ". Industry Week's " Top 10 Manufacturing Countries in 2020 " discussed a study by Deloitte and the U.S Council on Competitiveness concluding that, "By 2020 the U.S will overtake China to earn the top spot for the most competitive nation in the world."

Call to Action
We know you believe in the benefit of reshoring. We encourage you to continue to participate as much as possible by reporting your reshoring experiences and by following our Calls to Action. If you have a friend/coworker/business partner who would also benefit from learning more about reshoring, consider having a conversation with him or her. Here are some topics to help start the conversation.

Retailers: You Can Do More Domestic Sourcing
So far, Walmart has made the greatest visible retail effort to shift towards more U.S. sourcing, committing to purchase an additional $250 billion of US products over the 10 years ending in 2023. We applaud Walmart's efforts, but they can't do it alone. The Reshoring Initiative calls on all retailers, big box and small, to reevaluate their product sourcing and determine which imports can cost effectively be replaced with domestic goods. Supporting American manufacturing = strengthening your customers' buying power - Do the math. Start here.

Supply Chains: Filling One Gap Makes a Huge Impact
We are asking readers to identify supply chains with one or two important, small gaps. See The Game Changing Effect of Filling in Supply Chain Gaps, and contact Harry Moser with more examples. We will seek companies to fill those gaps.

Dear Tim Cook: The Reshoring Initiative Can Solve That Problem
In a recent 60 Minutes interview (see part 2) Tim Cook pointed to a lack of toolmakers as the barrier to reshoring production to the U.S. We believe bringing skilled workforce recruitment and training to the level of Germany and Switzerland is the highest priority to enable reshoring and FDI. Accordingly we have developed a series of Skilled Workforce programs to address the problem, providing high impact at minimal cost.
Any community, state, training institution or company that would like to implement any of these ideas, please contact

Vote for Reshoring
Your vote matters. Let the candidates know what you want. Follow the reshoring related issues on our blog: " It is primary season! Who is going to support Reshoring?


U of Buffalo receives grant to train mfg. workers using MSSC CPT and ACT NCRC
University at Buffalo received a $99K NY state grant to train 50 dislocated workers for entry-level to mid-level manufacturing positions. They're using NCRC and CPT and providing job search and interview prep.
"The 14-week Manufacturing Production Technician (MPT) program, which combines online learning with classroom-based training and mentoring, begins March 9. It will provide successful participants with nationally-recognized certificates in job readiness and manufacturing.
...Successfully passing an assessment for a module earns a certificate from the Manufacturing Skill Standards Council while earning all four certificates secures a CPT certification. The CPT is accredited under the only global certification body for manufacturers, the American National Standards Institute."
Please click here for the full  University of Buffalo Press Release.

Industry Week article on solving the workforce shortage profiles KY's GCTC
According to a recent Industry Week article, "to help develop workers for the more specialized jobs, KI Furniture hosts three to four post-high-school apprenticeships per year through programs at a local career academy developed through the Northeast Wisconsin (NEW) Manufacturing Alliance." NEW includes Gateway Community and Technical College (GCTC), where you can see in the image on the right,  N orthern Kentucky FAME apprentices Kaylee Griffin  and Abdou Ba use the circuit training board during class (Credit:  KY FAM image). 

" a region where 23% of all jobs are in manufacturing, people were retiring and no one could replace them. Technical colleges didn't have the right programs for the increasingly skilled workforce. Even four-year colleges were lacking-not a single college in the region had an engineering program."

KI also hosts two different youth apprenticeships-one in the engineering department with a high school student who's already working on college credit, and one with an at-risk youth education program that currently has seven students enrolled in school right on site. 

Please click here for the full Industry Week article. 
In This Issue
U.S. Chamber Career Success Event
Toyota Exec Joins MSSC Board
Report from CSW on Skilled Workforce
2017 Budget Prioritizes Workforce Ed
Kaleba Responds to State of the Union
New STEM Report from HuffPost
IW Skills Gap Webinar
Reshoring Initiative Call to Action
U of Buffalo Receives Mfg. Grant
IW Report on Workforce Shortage
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