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Can the Maker Movement End the Skills Gap?

Michael C. Anderson Senior Editor


We in the manufacturing world have been watching the skills-gap crisis in manufacturing rise up around us. The number of baby-boomers retiring has become a flood while the number of young people interested in manufacturing slows to a trickle. Most of us, however, haven’t been aware that another cultural change is happening at the same time—a change that, if nurtured, could become a lifeline for manufacturers. It's the maker movement. Full Article

Workforce Pipeline: Colliding Worlds: Engineering Meets Biology

Lauralyn McDaniel, Industry Manager - Medical, SME


Medical manufacturing has been a leader in using additive manufacturing(AM)/3D printing for end-use applications for at least 15 years. The combination of 3D scanning of a patient with the ability to print from that scan has made AM a natural fit for things like prosthetics, dental implants, and hearing aid cases. Today, the technology is expanding into new areas including printing implantable devices, bone and tissue scaffolds, and even printing of tissues. Full Article

Workforce Pipeline: Creating All-Stars Through Opening Doors: The Rippl3D Story

Bill Macy and Dane Sanders


In sports, everyone knows their skill level as a result of how well they perform at the various levels of competition. To consistently get better, players practice and scrimmage to hone their skills and improve their performance. What if instead of these physical practices, we asked our young athletes to study “Principles of Athleticism” and “History of Athletic Gear” from a textbook and gave them written exams. Full Article

Manufacturing Job Growth Widespread in 2014, Analysis Says

Senior Editor Bill Koenig


US growth in manufacturing employment last year increased in 212, or 66%, of 322 metro areas, according to an analysis of government employment data. Full Article

Where is GM’s ‘Missing’ $4.6 Billion?

Executive Editor James D. Sawyer


On April 30 General Motors announced that over the course of three years it will invest $5.4 billion in plant improvements. It detailed only three places, all in Michigan, where the money will be spent: Pontiac Metal Center will see a $124 million investment, Lansing Delta Township Assembly, $520 million, and Warren’s Pre-Production Operations facility, $139.5 million.
Full Article

Workforce Pipeline: How One Ohio High School Makes Engineers

Dan Stacy, Engineering Instructor, Centerville (OH) High School


I am often asked by parents how Centerville High School’s STEM program will enhance their child’s educational experience and lead to better success in an engineering field. One of the first things I tell them is that we are an SME recognized PRIME site. This came with a $35,000 grant and national recognition as a school that exemplifies advanced manufacturing education. Full Article

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