Volume 1, Issue 5 | September 1, 2020
Preparing Technicians for the Future of Work is pleased to bring you news and resources in collaboration with the National Science Foundation Advanced Technology Education (ATE) community and industry partners. We hope that this content will be useful in this time of substantial educational change. For more information about our project, please visit preparingtechnicians.org.
Upcoming Events
Join the NCPN Virtual Conference 2020 on Thursday and Friday, October 15-16, from Noon to 3:00 EDT each day. The conference schedule consists of inspiring keynotes, informative featured presentations, and panels of experts on cutting-edge topics. Attendees will be given access to a wide range of asynchronous breakout sessions to view at their convenience for 10 months.

For the full NCPN conference schedule/program and to register, see the NCPN Conference website at www.ncpn.info/conf_2020.
The Center for Energy Workforce Development (CEWD) will hold a virtual career event and job fair on October 21 during Careers in Energy Week. The Honorable Dan Brouillette, Secretary, U.S. Department of Labor will serve as a keynote presenter. There is no charge to attend the event. Educators and industry companies are encouraged to promote the program to students, community leaders, workforce systems, and community organizations. For more information, registration, or promotional materials visit their website.
Industry Spotlight
Cobots On the Offensive Against Covid-19
Universal Robots presents the first in an ongoing series of articles on how cobots are playing a key role in the global defense against Covid-19. There are exciting and unexpected innovations that are changing the landscape of this technology. Urgent necessity is challenging and mobilizing industry to venture into new territory. Cobots are being deployed for disinfection and for testing kit solutions, for example. To read more, visit their website.
By Thomas Lichtenberger, Board of Contributors
When thinking about manufacturing in America, what comes to mind? Big data processing, cloud-based systems, advanced robotics, and artificial intelligence? If not, they should. The significance of these technologies cannot be overstated. Take AI for example. When used for predictive maintenance AI’s greatest value to manufacturing comes from predictive maintenance, yielding $0.5 trillion to $0.7 trillion across the world’s businesses. So this Fourth Industrial Revolution, also known as Industry 4.0, has ushered in an unprecedented technological revolution, and with it, paradigm shifts that affect us all. For many automation companies, it’s presenting a management challenge in terms of ensuring individuals, teams, and the organizational structure as a whole can adjust accordingly when new technology and software is introduced.  Read More.

Thomas Lichtenberger is a leader and innovator in the global automation technology and education markets. He currently serves on the Board of Contributors for Preparing Technicians for the Future of Work, and was formerly a member of the project's Industry Advisory Board. Thomas is a partner at Bluestrive, LLC in the Greater New York Area.
Industry Advisory Board Welcomes Gail Norris
Gail Norris has joined the Industry Advisory Board for Preparing Technicians for the Future of Work. As Director of SITRAIN Digital Industry Academy for Siemens, she is responsible for customer product training and learning services in the US. Her previous experience includes roles in program management and procurement for Siemens, as well as roles in supply chain, auditing and consulting for aviation and accounting organizations.
Spotlight on the NSF ATE Community
BILT Releases Updates - IT Infrastructure Job Skills List
The National Convergence Technology Center's Band Industry Leadership Team (BILT) has released its annual IT Infrastructure Job Skills List. The Center's BILT convenes annually in the summer to reassess, rank, update, and revise IT job skills that entry-level IT infrastructure workers will need over the next 36 months. This process works to ensure students are learning what the regional workforce needs. The updated 2020 version is now available, along with a short video explaining how to use the list. To learn more about the annual voting process that determines the KSAs for entry-level jobs, watch this video.
For more information about The National Convergence Technology Center (CTC) and the BILT visit their website.
Professional Development Resources
NCACT Summer Webinar Series 2020
The National Coalition of Advanced Technology Centers will host the final webinar in their professional development summer series, "Professional Development for Faculty During Pandemic Conditions," on September 24 from 2:00 - 3:30 EDT. To register for this webinar or to view the previous two webinars, "Reopening ATC-CTE Hands-On Training Labs Best Practices" and "Recruiting Students and Faculty for a Safe, High-Quality Return" visit their website. https://ncatc.org/.
Making Learning Opportunities Available to Everyone

Addressing education disparities continues to be a priority in education. In response, the advocacy community has developed a number of resources to assist in improving accessibility and equity

The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) co-hosted a webinar, "OERs, UDL and Accessibility: A Partnership with Equity," with CAST and SkillsCommons as they dive into open educational resources (OERs) and lesson plans that are accessible, relevant and engaging. Click here to view this presentation.

JFF provides multiple resources on equal opportunity for economic advancement in career and technical education and job training on their "Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Apprenticeship & WBL" webpage.
Rebecca L Cooney, Clinical Associate Professor, Washington State University
Listen to the Preparing Technicians for the Future of Work Podcasts
Hosted by Mike Lesiecki, the project's monthly podcasts cover topics such as artificial intelligence, the internet-of-things, cybersecurity, advanced robotics, digital design and prototyping, and other topics at the changing interface of technology, work, and education.  In each podcast, you will hear interviews with industry leaders and working technicians in the field.

This month's podcast features a discussion with Matthew Carter, Vice President of Cook Medical in Winston-Salem, NC. In this episode, we look at the the impacts of the pandemic on the medical manufacturing industry and what that means for the technician of the future. With the acceleration of production, working remotely, and the interdependence of technologically advanced systems, the cross-cutting skills that technicians need in manufacturing are increasingly important.

Listen to this episode or catch up on any of our past podcasts here: https://www.preparingtechnicians.org/podcasts/
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Disclaimer: This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under NSF DUE #1839567. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.