Michael Lesiecki, Host
|Episode 13: A Robot for Every Technician? A Look at Trends Driving Manufacturing|
MARCH 2020 — In this episode, we check in on the evolution of those buzzword technologies driving manufacturing: automation, 5G, big data, AI, cybersecurity, machine learning and cobots. All of these technologies impact technician training. What do they really need to know? Will every technician need a cobot assigned to them? Our guests from the Association for Manufacturing Technology help us compare the hype behind some technologies with the timeline for thorough development and implementation.
|EPISODE 12: Agility and Resilience in the Modern Workforce|
DECEMBER 2019 — What are employers looking for in a technician candidate? And how do they find those new hires? One approach, used at BRP, Inc., involves a partnership between several companies and Gateway Technical College. Together they’ve developed a one-year Motorcycle, Marine, and Outdoor Power Product program that feeds the local technician pipeline.
|EPISODE 11: The Customer: Driver of Future Change|
NOVEMBER 2019 — The drivers for the changes and investments businesses make have always been centered on reducing costs and increasing productivity. Those things are obviously still very, very important. But what has surfaced is a real focus on the customer.
|EPISODE 10: Digital Transformation|
OCTOBER — The forecasts for job loss and job creation over the next few years include the latest new job title, “Digital Transformation Specialist.” What does this person do? Who hires them? And what qualifications are important?
|EPISODE 9: The Year in Review|
SEPTEMBER — As the Preparing Technicians for the Future of Work project celebrates its first birthday, it’s time to stop and ask, “What have we learned?” and “What have we accomplished?” Here are some highlights from Year 1.
|EPISODE 8: Digital Twins|
AUGUST 2019 — Technology allows people who are building and developing things to do it in virtual space, the digital space, and then to use the information from that exact duplicate and build the part. Companies are looking for ways to get a competitive advantage and that’s the promise of the digital twin.
|EPISODE 7: Smarter and More Independent Robots|
JULY — Machine learning and artificial intelligence help robots become smarter and more aware of their surroundings, so that they can work on their own. As they become more independent and can make the decisions on their own, productivity should improve. But at the same time that robots are becoming more versatile, they are also becoming more complex. A different technician skill set will be needed.
|EPISODE 6: Micro-Credentials in Training and Education|
JUNE — What if a student would like to earn credit in bite-sized pieces? What if employers valued shorter-time, competency-based credentials? Micro-credentials might be an answer.
|EPISODE 5: Journey to the Future Through Industry-Education Partnerships|
MAY — How can industry inspire students to envision themselves working in advanced manufacturing? And how can colleges attract and recruit students into existing high-tech career pathways programs? One approach, FlexFactor, combines strategic collaboration between organizations and student-led experiential learning to spark interest and spur recruitment
|EPISODE 4: Design Thinking for Gender Equity|
APRIL — Gender equity is a critical issue for both education and industry as we face the future of work. In this episode, we discuss how strategies for encouraging equitable representation of women in high-tech industry sectors might be replicable in STEM and technology programs at two-year technical and community colleges.
|EPISODE 3: One of the Key Things to Measure — OEE|
MARCH — A gap may exist between industry practice and what our students learn and practice in our education environment if they don’t learn about Overall Equipment Effectiveness. Today nearly every industry is digitally transforming itself and the accompanying high levels of automation and sensors monitoring every process and every piece of equipment generates an unbelievable amount of data. This data can help answer the questions, “How efficient are we?” And “Can we be better?”
|EPISODE 2: Who Owns the Skills Gap?|
FEBRUARY — Over the last ten years, the skills gap has increasingly been the subject of business roundtables, government agency forums and think tank research. Employers report struggling to find new workers with the skills they need. This means that both entry-level employees and incumbent workers need upskilling. Our guest in this episode says that if you think you’re going to hire somebody off the street that knows how to press every button, forget it. So who owns this skills gap?
|EPISODE 1: Preparing Technicians for the Future of Work|
JANUARY — For many of today’s technicians the Future of Work is already in focus. They are cross-disciplinary workers, immersed in diverse platforms and interrelated systems that once belonged to single industry sectors. This podcast series will explore the horizons of work from the perspective of industry partners, two-year college educators, technicians and NSF ATE leaders who are working together to transform technician education.