JCB tackles skills issue with apprenticeship program

The following article by Mary Carr Mayle appears in the Savannah Morning News:

John Patterson, president of Savannah-based JCB Inc., is nothing if not vocal about the problems he and other manufacturers have had finding skilled employees.

“Twenty-five years ago, manufacturing comprised 28 percent of our (gross domestic product),” Patterson said recently. “Currently, it’s 12 percent. The erosion of manufacturing meant fewer people were being employed and trained.

“Now, with the retirement of the Baby Boomer generation, that statistic is coming back to bite us.”

On average today, one skilled worker is trained for every four boomers retiring, Patterson said.

“Add to that the emphasis on college as the ultimate goal and the perception of manufacturing as dark, dirty, low-wage work, and it should come as no surprise that we have serious skills issues,” he said.

To read the complete article, visit the Savannah Morning News site!

Presentations/Links from 2012 Fall Drive-In

There were lots of great presentations at the MEATA 2012 Fall Drive-in Conference. If you missed the event or want copies of the Powerpoints and other documents from the event, you've come to the right place!

The event opened with a showing of the Edge Factor's "Metal & Flesh" film preview video that focuses on the incredible story of an innovative engineer/manufacturer who has "redefined what is possible" in the realm of prosthetics. (Watch for the film's release in 2013!). Here's a link to the Edge Factor website page where you can see the video for yourself: http://edgefactor.com/edgefactorshow/episode3

Next up was Russ Davis, State Director for the U.S. Dept. of Labor's Office of Apprenticeship, who provided a National Perspective on the State of Apprenticeships. Download his presentation.

Brad Erickson from the Capital Area Career Center provided an excellent overview of the processes, challenges and opportunities faced by Career/Tech Centers around the state related to integration of high school academic credits into CTE courses. Download his presentation.

John Hartwell, Apprentice Coordinator and Field Rep with IUOE Local 324 provided an overview of current legislation being proposed in Lansing designed to impact the High School Core Requirements. These include:

Senate Bill 1013 and House Bill 5645
Education; curricula; opt-out provision for foreign language and algebra II requirements for high school diploma; provide for pupils meeting certain alternative requirements. Amends sec. 1278a of 1976 PA 451 (MCL 380.1278a).
http://legislature.mi.gov/doc.aspx?2012-SB-1013
http://legislature.mi.gov/doc.aspx?2012-HB-5645

Senate Bill 0997 and House Bill 5451
Education; graduation requirements; Michigan merit curriculum; revise. Amends secs. 1278a & 1278b of 1976 PA 451 (MCL 380.1278a & 380.1278b). Includes credits for CTE "technical math" and "work-based learning" options.
http://legislature.mi.gov/doc.aspx?2012-SB-0997
http://legislature.mi.gov/doc.aspx?2012-HB-5451

House Bill 5456
Education; graduation requirements; completion of certain vocational technical or career and technical education in lieu of certain state high school diploma requirements; allow. Amends secs. 1278a & 1278b of 1976 PA 451 (MCL 380.1278a & 380.1278b).
http://legislature.mi.gov/doc.aspx?2012-HB-5456

NOTE: You can follow these and other bills via the Michigan Legislative website, a free service of the Michigan Legislative Council, the Michigan House of Representatives and the Michigan Senate. The site allows you to search for bills from current and prior sessions and Public Acts (bills passed into law). The site can also automatically e-mail you legislative updates based on keywords, sponsoring legislators or categories (such as Education, graduation requirements and Education, career and technical).

Last but not least, Patty Adolfs from the Oakland County ISD could not attend the event but put together a great AdobeConnect presentation with lots of tips on how manufacturers (and really any industry representatives) can work successfully with K-12 educators and adminstrators. View her presentation. (Adobe Flash Player 10.1 or higher required.) 

Too Many Brain Surgeons, Not Enough Machinists

Author and expert in economic trends Joel Kotkin says too many people in Michigan go to four-year colleges and come out with a lot of debt and no marketable skills. What Michigan needs, he says, are more people with mid-level skills, not advanced degrees.

Check out the following online articles for more details:

http://michiganradio.org/post/too-many-brain-surgeons-not-enough-machinists

 

Study Concludes U.S. Companies Can't Find Needed Skilled Workers

SkillGapReport2011

The Manufacturing Institute, associated with the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), released on October 17, 2011, its most recent study of the workforce challenges faced by the manufacturing sector.

The bottom line is: all across the U.S., companies cannnot find the workers they need to get the job done:

  • 600,000 job vacancies in skilled positions are unfilled nationwide because of the lack of qualified workers
  • 5 percent of current manufacturing jobs are unfilled due to a lack of qualified candidates
  • Employers expect the situation to worsen as workers retire and young people pursue work in other sectors
  • 64 percent of companies report that workforce shortages or skills deficiencies in production roles are having a significant impact on their ability to expand operations or improve productivity
  • 80 percent of companies indicated that machinists, operators, craft workers, distributors, and technician positions will be hardest hit by retirements in the upcoming years.

Click here for more info and a link to the full report.

Code Update Required For 2011 License Renewals

By Dan O'Donnell, Chief
Electrical Division
Reprinted from Code Works! Fall 2010 newsletter from the Michigan Bureau of Construction Codes

In order to renew a 2011 license for master electrician, journeyman electrician, and fire alarm specialty technician, an approved 15-hour code update course on the 2008 Michigan Electrical Code must be completed. Sign specialists are required to complete an approved 8-hour code update course.

Each instructor approved to teach the code update course is required to submit the original roster of course attendees to the Electrical Division. Since the rosters contain the names and license numbers of the course attendees, it is important the names and license numbers are legible, so the information can be transferred correctly to each licensee’s computer profile for use in renewing their license. If a profile does not indicate that the licensee has completed an approved code update course, the Bureau will be unable to issue a new license until the code update course is completed.

If the licensee has not already completed a 2008 code update course, it is important they do so as soon as possible in order to prevent a delay in the issuance of their 2011 license.

For a complete list of approved 2008 code update courses, visit the bureau’s website, click Divisions, click Electrical Division, and the courses are listed under Examinations and Licensing.

For questions regarding the code update process, contact the Electrical Division at (517) 241-9320.