Students leaving school and entering the modern workforce require a plethora of skills. Advanced technologies have revolutionized the manufacturing sector, and low-skilled positions have dramatically decreased. In fact, today’s manufacturing workers require more advanced skills than ever before.
Amatrol, with the backing of LIFT and the United States Department of Defense, created IGNITE: Mastering Manufacturing, a new program that provides career exploration opportunities and equips high school students with the in-depth knowledge and hands-on skills they need to be successful in the highly-skilled, high-pay jobs available in advanced manufacturing.
Here are 6 reasons IGNITE is perfect for your school.
1 – The growing numbers of manufacturing jobs open to new job seekers.
When asked by Popular Mechanics, ‘What Is the Biggest Challenge to Manufacturing in the U.S.?’ a representative from the company Briggs & Stratton stated ‘[…] Filling the skills gap is important for the U.S. to compete in the global marketplace.’
The greatly discussed skills gap is a challenge for manufacturers. However, it can present a broadening of opportunity for today’s students. Job-seekers with the skills that manufacturers so keenly need have the chance to achieve well-paying and rewarding jobs. Manufacturing job openings have increased by close to 3 percentage points since 2019.
But to compete for these new opportunities, students require a solid foundation and guidance by educators. What can you do to inspire your students to hone their technical skills? Once you’ve piqued their interest, how then should you prepare them to enter the modern manufacturing industry?
Luckily, educators can rely on the expertise of Amatrol, the world’s leader in technical education for more than 30 years, to supply cutting-edge programs like IGNITE to best prepare students for rewarding manufacturing jobs.
While strengthening STEM learning in schools has been important to keep up with advancements in the workplace, it’s apparent that modern manufacturing companies are seeking advanced skillsets in individuals they wish to invest in. Students who graduate with a rounded and intrinsic understanding of new industry paradigms are more equipped to help manufacturers grow their output and, of course, revenue.
2 – Manufacturing is an increasingly popular aspiration for students.
According to this survey by Parsable, 56% of Generation Z (born between 1997 and 2012) have a more favorable view of the manufacturing industry than before the pandemic. As global manufacturing embraces technology and increased efficiency moves facilities geographically, perceptions about manufacturing jobs are changing. It’s important to expose students to the exciting opportunities that manufacturing, in an Industry 4.0 landscape, can offer.
3 – The program offers flexibility in regard to instructor qualifications.
Introducing a new program to your institution may often mean that you need new specialist instructors to teach. However, IGNITE was designed with flexibility and instructor resources necessary to enable any instructor qualified to teach career and technical education (CTE) classes to run the program.
Invaluable guidance will be provided to instructors, including; the Instructor’s Guide for each IGNITE course which contains a flow chart that serves as a resource for how each course can be structured.
IGNITE uses hands-on workstations featuring state-of-the-art technologies used for Industry 4.0 applications, such as; sensors and PLCs, as well as basic electrical, fluid power, and robotics systems, and Additive Manufacturing. Students safely master industry-relevant technical skills using IGNITE’s detailed, step-by-step curriculum.
These hands-on training systems, which are designed by engineers and subject-matter experts and hand-crafted, assembled, welded, wired, and painted at Amatrol’s facility in Jeffersonville, Indiana, are loaded with real-world, industrial components to enable students to practice on the type of equipment they will encounter on the job. These heavy-duty systems stand up to frequent use by inexperienced users.
4 – A flexible, modular curriculum
Amatrol wants to give instructors the freedom to deliver the IGNITE program in the way they feel it will best serve their students. The program includes a variety of instructional groupings, including group blocks, pod rotations, mini projects, and field trips. This structure allows instructors to assign eLearning topics to individual students for self-directed study while other students work in groups on pod rotations and mini projects.
In addition, you can also plan to send instructors to the Amatrol Technical Training Institute (ATTI) in Jeffersonville, Indiana, for instructor training specifically for the IGNITE program. ATTI-trained instructors will leave with the skills and confidence to kick off a successful IGNITE program in their schools.
Designed around project-based learning, the IGNITE program consists of six one-semester courses in a modular format that allows schools to roll out IGNITE as a one-, two-, or three-year program:
- Course 1: Introduction to Advanced Manufacturing
- Course 2: Introduction to Systems
- Course 3: Mechatronic Systems
- Course 4: Digital Manufacturing Systems
- Course 5: Advanced Materials & Design
- Course 6: IIoT, Data Analytics, & Networking
We know building an advanced manufacturing training program from the ground up can seem like a daunting task. That’s why we made it easy to get started with IGNITE. Its flexible, modular format lets you take that first step with confidence, knowing that the experts at Amatrol will be there to help you strategize and plan every step of the way.
For example, a school already using Amatrol’s AC/DC Electrical Learning System (T7017) to teach basic electricity can easily use that system as a foundation to build upon to start a new IGNITE program. As time and funding allows, additional courses can be added until your goals are achieved.
5 – IGNITE set students on the path to widely recognized industry certification.
Having a lot of open-positions doesn’t mean that manufacturers will risk efficiency by not hiring wisely. Students should differentiate themselves by attaining qualifications with indus
try recognized certification. Increasingly, employers look to industry-standard certifications as evidence that potential workers have the relevant skills they need. Certifications endorsed by and developed in conjunction with industry give employer’s confidence that potential workers will be able to hit the ground running without sig
nificant additional training. The IGNITE program helps to prepare students to earn industry-standard certifications that will help students to stand out to potential employers. IGNITE coursework lays the foundation for students to pursue industry-standard certifications for multiple career pathways.
For example, IGNITE students can choose to pursue certifications like the Manufacturing Skill Standards Council (MSSC) Certified Production Technician Plus Skill Boss certification or advanced Industry 4.0 certifications from the Smart Automation Certification Alliance (SACA).
6 – It’s so easy to get started.
Now you’re ready to learn more about IGNITE: Mastering Manufacturing, it’s time to contact Amatrol to learn how our team of experts can help you light the fire that will propel your students to a rewarding career.