It has been well documented that companies are struggling to find individuals with the skills required for today’s advanced manufacturing workplaces. These skill shortages pervade all stages of manufacturing— from engineering to skilled production. This workforce crisis originates with a misperception of modern manufacturing that has been passed down to a generation of job seekers.
The Facts: Public Perception of Manufacturing
- 90 percent of American’s rate manufacturing as "important" or "very important" for America’s economic prosperity and standard of living
- Manufacturing ranks fifth for Americans when choosing to begin their careers behind industries like technology, energy, and healthcare.
- Only 35 percent of Americans say they would encourage their children to pursue careers in manufacturing, despite the advanced skills and above average pay that are characteristic of work in today’s.
Critical to changing the perception of manufacturing is engaging youth in the advanced manufacturing experience and allowing them to participate first hand in the high-tech, talent-driven innovation that drives our competitiveness. The Manufacturing Institute has begun to capture best practices of Dream It. Do It. programs that have successfully engaged youth in manufacturing and STEM themed activities.
A Toolkit to Engage Students in STEM Pathways and Manufacturing Careers