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MSSC and CME sign MOU on skills harmonization between U.S. and Canada
At the annual conference of the North American Strategy for Competitiveness (NASCO) in Windsor on September 29, the CEOs of the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters (CME) and MSSC signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to announce the harmonization of their respective standards and certifications for front-line manufacturing production workers. As a consequence, the CME Production Assemblers and Operators and MSSC Certified Production Technician (CPT) certifications are essentially deemed interchangeable.
Advantages of this harmonization for organizations with Canadian and U.S. operations include the use of either certification for developing common processes and tools to recruit, hire, promote, assign and evaluate workers from either country to perform front-line manufacturing work in either country.
CME and MSSC encourage all organizations with Canadian and U.S. operations to recognize both credentials as interchangeable and begin immediately to explore with their HR professionals how the harmonization of CME and MSSC work standards and certifications can benefit their organizations.
This MOU also demonstrated: (1) the universality of skill standards for front-line production work; and (2) the value of MSSC Standards in the international operations of multinational manufacturers.
Please click here for the full CME MSSC Press Release.

Ron Painter, President and CEO, NAWB joins MSSC Board of Directors
MSSC is pleased to announce that Ron Painter, President and CEO of the National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB) has joined the MSSC Board of Directors. NAWB's mission is to support its members through a comprehensive program of advocacy, training and technical assistance, communication, and the promotion of strategic partnerships for the advancement of our nation's workforce.
Mr. Painter is responsible for all facets of managing this prominent national 501(c)3 membership organization the supports the implementation of federal employment and training programs, including the new Workforce Investment and Opportunities Act (WIOA). NAWB communicates information about what is happening in Washington, DC to the field and communicate what is happening across the U.S. to Members & staff in Congressional Offices, the Administration and other organizations concerned with workforce development. Ron oversees overall direction for the NAWB annual meeting that attracts over 1200 workforce professionals from across the U.S. and actively participates in raising operating funds for the organization.
Mr. Painter will make a strong contribution from the workforce development perspective to to the industry-led MSSC Board.

MSSC awards Instructor of the Year to Victor Burgos from Ivy Tech CC
MSSC is pleased to announce the winner of the 2015 MSSC Authorized Instructor of the Year Award, Victor Burgos from Ivy Tech Community College! There were over 50 nominations submitted and we congratulate Victor on an amazing accomplishment.
Below are a several highlights from his student and staff nominations:
"He has impacted the lives of over 50 WorkOne Job Seekers and employed students with many advancing in their current position or hired into manufacturing positions within the Southern Indiana Region. Mr. Burgos inspired his students that after training for the CPT to continue into the Mechatronics and Robotic fields which some of the students have plans to continue training. He has opened the door to Advanced Manufacturing with Indiana being the number one state in Manufacturing." -Stacey, Staff
"Victor challenged us to always "keep our eye on the prize". Although broadly referring to a concept, term, symbol, or process related to our curriculum of study in manufacturing practices, safety, and theory, Mr. Burgos always related from his life experiences of employment, education, and teaching. It was immediately apparent to me as well as all in the class that Victor was "a tonic of positivity and attitude" -Anthony, CPT Student
"Victor set a very productive tone in the classroom, treating us as adults, yet leading the class purposefully. He expected excellence, but wasn't hard on us when we fell short. He prepared us to not only pass the tests, but also gave us knowledge about how to succeed in a manufacturing environment afterwards. He was cheerful and encouraging." -Perry, CPT Student
While we could only pick one winner, there were so many tremendous nominations, that we would like to highlight several honorable mentions who are also taking major strides to bring MSSC to their communities and helping their students to succeed!
  • Mark T. Van Meter, Preeminent Training Specialists, LLC
  • John Battista, Prosser Career Academy
  • James Schoen, Tennessee College Applied Technology, Murfreesboro
  • Anthony Del Veccho, New Jersey Council of County College

MSSC and SOCMA launches training pilot in Georgia
MSSC and the Society of Chemical Manufacturers and Associates (SOCMA) are collaborating on a pilot program utilizing MSSC's Certified Production Technician (CPT) certification system and SOCMA's Chemical/Process Operator Training (COT) training program to train and credential a minimum of 10-20 people through Wiregrass Community college Valdosta, GA.
The purpose of this pilot is to identify the benefits for SOCMA's employer members in hiring workers with both the CPT and the COT. Assuming the benefits are established and impactful, MSSC and SOCMA hope to arrive at a long-term Collaboration Agreement based on a "stackable" training system.

MSSC partners with Graduation Alliance to create career pathway program
MSSC has partnered with the Graduation Alliance, a leader in alternative education and post-secondary planning technologies to create career pathway programs for manufacturing and logistics. Together, the organizations intend to address the sector's talent gap by scaling their complementary solutions.
The partnership will focus on putting former high school dropouts on a clear path to diploma completion, professional training and industry certification. Students will be better prepared to pursue viable career opportunities amidst the demand for higher skilled, indusrry-certified applicants in today's manufacturing and logistics industries.

Please click here for the Press Release.

New NAM-MI-ERCA-SkillsUSA study on Career Technical Education (CTE)
Attracting the Next Generation Workforce, reports that CTE educators believe that "industry certifications are the most valuable educational credential" after high school graduation. This report leads with a ranking of the 12 leading influences on student career pathway decisions. Far at the top with some (69%) is "own interests and experiences." At the very bottom (3%) is "counselors." As the report notes, the latter finding suggests that school "counseling services need to be re-thought."
MSSC could not agree more. As "MSSC Community Update" readers know, last June, MSSC and SME published Transforming Career Counseling white paper. The lead recommendation in that paper is: All students should have a formal education and career pathway plan by 9th Grade, facilitated by full-time certified career counselors in every secondary school.
Please click here for the full Attracting the Next Generation Workforce report and its findings.

Footprint of the Future: Chasing Technology and Talent
According to the October 2015, Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI) article highlighted in National Council for Advanced Manufacturing (NACFAM)'s influential "Manufacturing Trends" report that, "Over the last 20 years, the growing global economy has allowed manufacturers to enter new markets to serve an increasingly global customer base while also shortening supply chains and reducing cost structures. As the business environment changes, a country that once promised low-cost manufacturing might now boast high-tech R&D centers."
MAPI collaborated with Deloitte to understand the factors that drive manufacturing investments today and how they will shift by 2020. The MPI study found that, "over 50% of manufacturers plan to enter a new market in the next five years and almost all plan to expand existing sites or open new facilities in countries with existing operations."
The report continued (emphasis added) that, "Today's market conditions and
opportunities, the search for talent, and business disruption risks drive primary location decisions. But by 2020 the drivers are expected to shift to access to technological advances and investment in the talent pipeline. From the MSSC perspective, this reports corroborates other findings that the availability of a talent pipeline has become one of the top 2-3 drivers of industry decisions about where to locate new facilities."
Please click here for the full article. Footprint of the Future article.

U.S. Manufacturers look homeward as world economy cools
According to Steve Minter from Quality Management Network (QMN), "When it comes to sales and investment, American manufacturers are taking Dorothy's advice from The Wizard of Oz: "There's no place like home."  Only 23% of manufacturers are optimistic about the direction of the global economy, according to the Q3 2015 Manufacturing Barometer, a survey of senior executives at large U.S. industrial companies released by PwC US." 

This was in sharp contrast to their outlook for the United States economy. Six out of 10 executives said they remained positive about the domestic economy, though that was 9 percentage points lower than in the second quarter. Despite their caution, manufacturers raised their revenue forecast for the next 12 months, to 5.3% from their 4.9% prediction of three months ago. Despite the downward turn in overseas sentiment, overall domestic growth prospects remained healthy and manufacturers continue to focus on further strengthening core products and services. They are keeping their cash at home and directing investment toward enhancing their value propositions in an effort to remain competitive and drive future revenues."

Please click here for the full Steve Minter article.

2015 BLS reports show continued growth in mfg. and logistics jobs
Most recent Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) reports show some growth in manufacturing jobs and especially strong growth in logistics jobs. 

Following a positive trend in 2014, many economists and reports suggest the U.S. economy and job market are positioned to yield steady growth in 2015 and 2016. The predictions are based on field market research, as well as an analysis of 2015 economic projections and market trends. 

Please see attached reports for BLS Manufacturing Data and BLS Logistics Data

Development of skilled workforce is key to reshoring and mfg. growth
According to the Skilled Workforce Development article in this Reshoring Initiative Newsletter, "A strong skilled workforce is key to reshoring and manufacturing growth. Development of a skilled workforce begins with motivating a higher quantity and quality of recruits. The program is designed to change some of the misperceptions about manufacturing and help communities develop the skilled professionals needed to reshore manufacturing to the U.S."

In 2012, Reshoring Initiative President, Harry Moser, was invited to the Department of Labor (DOL) to recommend steps to prepare the skilled manufacturing workforce needed to support reshoring. He explained that a national mindshift was needed away from promoting education as the only means for achieving success to promoting both education and training as paths to high-paying careers. Mr. Moser also recommended that the income of workers that have passed an apprenticeship or have a strong portfolio of NIMS, MSSC or AWS certificates be shown along with the degree holders.


Bryan Albrecht named 2015 Entrepreneurial President by NACCE
The National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE), this month, named Gateway Technical College President and CEO Bryan Albrecht as the 2015 Entrepreneurial President, an award which recognizes a college president nationally for "entrepreneurial mindset in building an entrepreneurial spirit throughout internal and external campus communities."

Mr. Albrecht was named Entrepreneurial President at the national NACCE convention. His nominator said "Bryan embodies an entrepreneurial spirit and willingness to explore new opportunities for Gateway Technical College and the communities Gateway serves."

In addition to serving (for over five years) on the MSSC Board of Directors, Mr. Albrecht serves on the Boards of all the major Community College and CTE associations, such as ACTE, NASDCTE, and AACC.  

Please click here for the full Bryan Albrecht press release. 

North Central Indiana provides means to close skills gap
Employers and educators from Ivy Tech Community College, Indiana University Kokomo and area high schools gathered earlier this month at IUK to discuss the value of industrial certifications in addressing the manufacturing sector's "skills gap." 

The group convened for an Employers/Educators Connection forum hosted by the North Central Indiana Economic Development Partnership. Neil Reddy, MSSC's Executive Director, gave a well-publicized keynote address and noted that six out of 10 open skilled production positions are unfilled due to a shortage of qualified workers - what's known as the skills gap. Reddy commended regional stakeholders on their collaboration among secondary schools, higher education and employers to provide opportunities for people to obtain the skills manufacturing employers expect from workers.
"The hardest part of all this is to get the stakeholder community engaged," Reddy said. "You certainly have all the pieces you need and you're well ahead of the game. You'll not only maintain your current manufacturers, but you'll attract new manufacturers."

Please click here for the full Kokomo Tribune article. 

Florida's EDC Manufacturing Talent Asset Pipeline program graduates CPTs
The Economic Development Commission of Florida's Space Coast has a number of area churches that definitely have discovered economic development.
The two sectors came together Thursday when the EDC joined an alliance of eight area churches to celebrate the recipients of the nationally recognized Manufacturing Skills Standards Council's Certified Production Technician credential.

It was part of a pilot program started earlier this year when a local group known as the "Pastors Community Alliance" linked with the EDC's Manufacturing Talent Asset Pipeline pilot program, also known as TAP, to bolster skills and employment for the local manufacturing sector. Four individuals last Thursday received their CTP credential.

Please click here for the full Florida Today article.

In This Issue
Ron Painter, NAWB joins MSSC Board
MSSC names instructor of the year
MSSC/SOCMA launch pilot program
MSSC partners with Graduation Alliance
NAM-MI-ERCA-SkillsUSA CTE report
Footprint of the future article
US manufacturers look homeward
2015 BLS mfg. and logistics jobs reports
Skilled workforce is key to reshoring
Bryan Albercht honored by NACCE
N. Central IN provides means to close skills gap
Florida's EDC program graduates CPTs
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