The current skills gap has left manufacturers confronting a looming obstacle: an under-qualified workforce. With every job unfulfilled, companies lose annual earnings due to downtime, overtime, and increased cycle times.
A related problem? Today’s CTE schools and universities face limitations in preparing students for success in their chosen careers. Without insight into the real-world job environment, many graduate lacking the critical thinking and workplace-honed problem solving skills employers expect and need. Education in an academic setting while necessary, only takes students to a point.
Understandably, there is renewed support for apprenticeship programs from the manufacturing sector and in government on both sides of the aisle.
Enter Governor Bakers 2021 Revised House 2 plan which proposes $17.9 million in workforce funding, including $8.4 million in funding to transform vocational high schools into Career Technical Institutes running three shifts per day. This initiative is designed to train 20,000 new workers over four years in skilled trades and technical fields including plumbing, HVAC, manufacturing, and robotics. This will consist of a combination of enrolling more high school students in high-impact vocational trade programs and expanding capacity for adults to earn industry-based credentials, aligned to apprenticeships and post-secondary degrees.
Helping to close the skills gap
The Mechatronics Apprenticeship Partner Program (MAP2) was established by Festo Didactic to address the workforce skills gap in Advanced Manufacturing. MAP2 is designed to help individuals learn industry-ready skills while earning an associate's degree. Participants learn in a classroom while holding a steady job. Employers nurture skills that are needed in today’s workforce by matching student's theoretical education with hands-on and on-the-job training.
"Festo understands the formula for successful apprenticeship programs and can help develop a pipeline of students for your school by connecting Festo industrial customers."
By partnering in the MAP2 apprenticeship program, educators and business can directly collaborate using a state-of-the-art learning environment based on the Festo Industry 4.0 Certification Program (FI4.0CP), that improves student engagement and performance, increasing their chances at post-graduation success.
To help further the success and start-up of your the program, AET Labs Festo will commit to do the following:
- Provide free consultative services to develop a customized MAP2 program
- Establish an advisory board specific to mechatronics
- Make connections with Festo industrial customers and your school
- Actively engage with your constituents by offering introductory workshops and seminars to help build a pipeline of participating companies and students
- Promote your program to a national audience through case studies and other creative means
Learn while you earn
The MAP2 program is built on a dual-education system. It combines hands-on classroom learning within the Festo Learning Center, with on-the-job training.
Tuition and training are paid for students by the companies they are apprenticing for, ensuring that they graduate debt-free. Upon successful completion of the program, students will graduate with an Associate degree, well-prepared for a new beginning in a rewarding career.
Festo Mechatronics Apprenticeship Partner Program
Festo and AET Labs are actively seeking schools interested in developing an apprenticeship program in mechatronics. The skills gap in robotics and automation is real and exists throughout New England.
Are you ready to take the next step? Submit your consult request and click below for a promotional flyer to share with your staff.