Rexroth’s Indramat and Indradrive motors are an integral part of the manufacturing process at plants around the world. But there’s something even more essential to manufacturing. The most critical components are the trained men and women who operate the necessary tools to keep the manufacturing process alive. For this reason, it’s worth making sure that future generations are not only prepared to take on the manufacturing challenges of the future but prepared to take it in new and exciting directions. For that reason, efforts like The Manufacturing Universities Act of 2014 are worth celebrating.
The Manufacturing Universities Act of 2014 would establish a program with the Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology charged with designating 25 schools as ‘Manufacturing Universities.’ These schools would receive $5 million per year for four years to meet specific goals like focusing engineering programs on manufacturing, building new partnerships with manufacturing firms, growing training operations, and fostering manufacturing entrepreneurship.
This act, sponsored by Chris Coons (D-Del.) and Lindsay Graham (R – S.C.), has received major support from the Association of American Universities, the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU), the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, the University of Delaware, Delaware State University, Clemson University, the University of Illinois, the University of Missouri, the University of Pennsylvania, Temple University, Drexel University, Dow Chemical Company, and Dupont.
While jobs have been created in the manufacturing sector over the last few years, hundreds of thousands of jobs remain unfilled due to the lack of properly trained workers. According to Coons, “We need our engineers to fill the growing demand for manufacturing workers and accelerate manufacturing’s growth. This bipartisan bill would help us meet that challenge.”