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Skilled workers are quickly establishing themselves to be the backbone of the U.S. manufacturing industry. Unfortunately, the worsening skills gap in the manufacturing sector means that companies are scrambling to place over 2 million unfilled jobs.

If you’re struggling with the same problem, you may want to consider looking at community colleges, which are emerging as a top source of qualified manufacturing talent. Here are a few reasons why.

 

3D Printing Programs

Several community colleges around the country are offering programs in 3D printing, which is also known as additive manufacturing.  The programs are designed to help students develop a working knowledge of 3D printers so that they can create custom designs with real-world applications.

While degrees hinged specifically on 3D printing have yet to become a “thing,” many community colleges have nevertheless included the technology as part of their engineering and manufacturing-related majors. Expect to see a lot of growth in this area, especially considering the staggering variety of applications for 3D printing, ranging from the automotive and tech industries to the medical and micro-molding spaces.

 

Manufacturing-Related Certifications

Many community colleges offer certification programs aligned with the manufacturing industry, such as Computer Aided Design (CAD) and Computer Aided Engineering. These programs are specifically created to help students enter their desired manufacturing path in as little time as possible, armed with the up-to-date skills and experience to contribute to their prospective employers right away.

 

Apprenticeships

In many ways, apprenticeship programs are one of the best ways to nurture and develop manufacturing talent. These programs are also the reason why community colleges are so valuable to the industry. It’s here where organizations connect students and manufacturers to establish a talent pool where future manufacturing workers can develop their skills and experience, and get college accreditation to boot.

Bottom line? Community colleges are fast becoming the go-to place for both young and old students to acquire and polish their skills for the evolving needs of the U.S. manufacturing industry. These institutions are helping 18-year-olds prepare for a career in manufacturing and production, while also helping older workers align their skill sets with a sector that is now more technology-driven than ever.

For more workforce management guides and insights, be sure to follow this blog. If you need help sourcing qualified manufacturing talent, the staffing services experts of Top Notch Personnel are here to help. Call our offices to learn more about our recruitment solutions.

 

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