Introducing the Revamped MFG Day PB-Wiki Resources Page II

Manufacturing Day and Month needs your help in collecting surveys! In 2018, 5,075 students went on industry tours during Manufacturing Day, but only 24% students completed and turned in their surveys. During Manufacturing Day and Month, FLATE collects data from surveys completed by students, teachers, and manufacturers. The Manufacturing Day surveys gives feedback on how industry tours can be improved and gives us an insight on what students think about manufacturing fields. In 2018, we saw how big of an impact the tours had on students when results showed that there was a 77% additional growth for students considering a career in advanced manufacturing after taking an industry tour. Some of the additional comments students wanted to share were, This was the most interesting field trip I have been on,” and, “I was happy to have the opportunity to go on this tour and I would like to receive a job at one of these manufacturing facilities once I reach the designated requirements.”

In addition, by completing the Post-Teacher and Parent Survey, we can learn more about how teachers prepared students for the tour, more information on the students, and receive detailed feedback on the impact the tour had on both students and teachers. For instance, in 2018 97% of teachers and parents were able to see how STEM subjects were put to work in high tech industries and 100% recommended that other students have an opportunity to take an industry tour.

We also would love to hear feedback from Manufacturers to learn more about the tour and the perspective of the industry. The Post Tour Host Survey will help us view the in-kind contributions, the effectiveness of Manufacturing Day student tours, and see any opportunities your facility offers to the next generation of workers.

How to Access and Return Post Tour Manufacturing Day Surveys
Visit or search “FLATE Wiki” to visit FLATE’s PB Wiki Page and select the tour bus on the front page. You should see a banner with the Manufacturing Day logo at the top and, on the side, you will see a navigational bar. Select “MFG Day Surveys” and click on either the “Online survey” or the “Printable Survey”. If you choose to complete the survey by paper, please be sure to complete a “Cover Sheet” for each tour your students went on. For instance, if you took two different groups of students to SMT, you would need to complete a cover sheet for both of those tours. We recommend that you take the cover sheet with you on the tour so the tour guide can help you complete the “Industry” portion of the sheet. In addition, you can take the student surveys with you on the tour to ensure an allotted time to complete the survey. Online surveys can be accessed by a cell phone or computer by following the first steps above or visiting this link

Remember!! Online surveys are an eco-friendly and fast-paced way to turn in surveys and allows students to complete the survey at any time!

Paper surveys can be turned in at this location:
FLATE - HCC Brandon
10451 Nancy Watkins Dr.
Tampa, FL 33619

We’d love to hear everyone’s feedback on Manufacturing Day and Month, so please follow the links below to complete and share with your fellow tour adventurers!

Ready to host or take a tour? Then visit the Contact Page to contact your Regional Manufacturing Association or School Coordinator! For questions concerning the Manufacturing Day Resources Page, contact Elizabeth Duran ( To learn more about Manufacturing Day and Month in Florida, contact Marilyn Barger (

Engineering Technology Community News

The start of the new academic year is a good time to share updates and news about the people and places in Florida’s Engineering Technology Community. We now have 2 new State Colleges.  In recent months, North Florida Community Colleges and Florida Keys Community College have evolved to North Florida College and College of the Florida Keys and are now offering 4-year degrees. Florida Keys and North Florida both now offer a B.S. in Nursing, and Florida Keys is also offering a B.A.S, in Supervision and Management.  Congratulations to both colleges for their new status.

Sam Ajlani and Central Florida College opened its FAST Center for Fanuc Robotics Training which is a significant asset to Florida manufacturers and all engineering technology degree programs. Florida State College at Jacksonville opened its new Instrumentation Laboratory late in the spring and also has hired a new ET faculty, Kevin Beamish, who started this summer.
Additionally, John Byrd has joined the ET program at South Florida State College (SFSC) as faculty and program director.

Margi Lee has moved to Chipola College where she is teaching and coordinating the ET Degree program there. Margi also attended the HI-TEC conference for the first time in St Louis this summer with many other Florida Advanced Technology faculty.

Rick Frazier, Director of Workforce at Tallahassee Community College (TCC) retired late last spring, and after 5 dedicated and passionate years teaching, Bob Segiworth has left Lake Sumter State College’s (LSSC) ET program (which he started) to return to industry this past July.  Both Rick and Bob will be missed by our community and we wish them all the best as they transition to new adventures.

St. John’s River State College and Valencia College will begin offering AS ET Degree Program in 219-2020 academic in new facilities and new labs at their colleges. These are the 22nd and 23 Florida College adopting the AS Engineering Technology degree.

We also say a fond farewell to Libby Simpson who has left the Hillsborough County School District for a position with FIRST Robotics. Libby developed FLATE’s camp curriculum for 2 levels as well as all the CIS lessons built around Manufacturing Day tours.  She taught our Robotics Summer Camps for at least 6 years and coordinated them as well. We are sad to see her leave, but awesome to watch her build her career on strong foundations she started with FLATE and Hillsborough County.

I am sure that there is more news, so please be sure to let us know!  Several colleges are recruiting new ET faculty. IF you know of anyone who might be interested in teaching in an Engineering Technology program at a Florida College, please let us know so we can facilitate connections.

We are so excited to be going back to Seminole State College (SSC) for the ET Forum this fall on Oct 17-18. The Forum previously meet there in 2008 and way back at the ET Forum beginnings in 1997. We hope to see many of you there next month.  If you have issues with travel, please let me know.

Robotics Camps Take Students on a STEM-ULTIMATE Path of Learning & Fun

Robots are ubiquitous and have fascinated the young and the old for many decades. From the early days of R2D2, to the Jetsons, Wall-E, to Rover, robots conjure a variety of images. In reality robots are not only fun, but serve a variety of purposes that yield impactful results. Robots are increasingly assuming bigger roles and with the integration of technology, robots are poised to revolutionize how we as humans conduct daily business. Manufacturing is one arena where robots are changing the workplace, however not everyone is on the same level playing field when it comes to understanding the role of robots in high-tech production environments, the technology involved and the technical mojo to use these tools.

To strike a connection, FLATE, the Florida-based National Science Foundation Regional Center of Excellence has devised an innovative program that showcases the integration of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, or STEM and robotics in high-tech manufacturing. For a number of years FLATE’s robotics camps have served as a hook to spark middle and high school students’ interest in STEM, robotics and ultimately steer them into pursuing high-skilled, high-tech, high paying jobs in manufacturing. In a way these camps have served as a launch pad for inspiring the next generation of innovative thinkers.

This summer FLATE, in partnership with the NBT (Nuts, Bolts and Thingamajigs) Foundation and Hillsborough Community college, hosted four robotics and engineering camps for middle and high school students. The intro and intermediate camps were designed to teach students how to build and program LEGO® Mindstorms® EV3 Robots, and participate in team challenges that were geared to showcase how STEM is used in everyday high-tech industries. The focus of the high school engineering camp was on 3D modeling and CAD to design a functional robotic device using additive manufacturing techniques. What also set the high school camp apart from the intro and the intermediate camps is the emphasis on developing business acumen in manufacturing/marketing a product. Students brainstormed ideas to manufacture a tangible product. The goal was to come up with the design for a prototype robotic arm that they potentially could market to companies invested in space explorations and futuristic colonization plans in space.

In addition to the hands-on component of the camps, students also got to go on a tour of local manufacturing facilities to get a up-close and real-world view of manufacturing production processes. The field trip is often the highlight for the campers with a trip to Publix Dairy plant in Lakeland a highlight of their overall experience. A key benefit of the summer camps also lay in FLATE’s ongoing partnership with NBT, a nonprofit foundation which offers manufacturing camps and scholarships for students, as well as grants for STEM educators. STEM educators use the grant to formulate curriculum showcasing the connection between the business side of manufacturing and how manufacturers can use expertise of STEM professionals to market product and ideas. Other longstanding community partners like the Manufacturing Alliance of Hillsborough County and the Suncoast Credit Union Foundation have served a key role in offering need-based scholarships for middle and high school campers. The scholarships are targeted to raise awareness and interest in STEM-based manufacturing educational and career pathways for students from low income families.

In addition to the camps held at Hillsborough Community College, regional camps modeled after the FLATE robotics camps were held across the state. The Institute for Human Machine Cognition has for a number of years hosted camps. This year 38 campers attended IHMC’s 2019 summer robotics camp in Ocala. Sponsors covered camp fees for eighteen student and three teachers. The three teacher-campers learned the basics of robotics programming while participating and observing. These teachers have now returned to school ready to start clubs or teams. They will be able to borrow LEGO Mindstorms robots from IHMC to help them get started.

Lake Sumter’s “Women in STEM” summer camps were held at Lake-Sumter State College’s main
campus and at the Leesburg campus for Lake county students. Thirteen girls attended the camp at
the main the campus and 17 attended the camp at the Leesburg campus. The camps offered girls,  grades 8th through 12th, the opportunity to explore alternative energy technologies. Campers completed several hands-on projects, including solar-powered cell phone chargers, wind turbines, fuel cell model cars, and solar powered ovens. They also went on a field trip to the Orlando Science Center and got the opportunity to learn about STEM related careers from NASA astronaut Capt. Winston Scott.

The Advanced Manufacturing and Production Technology Center at North Florida State College hosted a four day mechatronics camp. Working with a blue print and precision measuring tools,  students learned how to use a bench lathe to turn different diameters on round stock. They also learned how a lathe can be used to drill a hole in round stock and preformed that function to a specified depth. The final component for completion of their two projects in machining was to use a tap and die set to put threads into the holes created in their component parts.

FLATE would like to thank ALL regional educational and industry partners and sponsors for their role in helping promulgate the importance of STEM, its applications in high-tech manufacturing and its role in positioning the U.S. as a global leader in the manufacturing arena. For more information on FLATE’s summer camp programs and/or other STEM related programs for middle and high school students contact Dr. Marilyn Barger, Executive Director of FLATE at You can also visit FLATE’s camp webpage at, and visit the FLATE Wiki for additional STEM related award-winning resources at

Five Minutes May Save Your Company

Did you know 40% of small businesses never recover from a disaster? *  We just missed a big one with Cat 5 Hurricane Dorian skimming our coastline.  However, hurricane season isn’t over until the end of November and NOAA predicts an active season.  FloridaMakes has developed custom tools to help manufacturers mitigate the impacts of future crises.  We provide immediate feedback on your business risk and continuity preparedness.  There’s no time like the present to take 5 minutes to see if your manufacturing company is ready for a future disaster.

Please take advantage of these free tools from FloridaMakes:
Disaster Readiness assessment – This 5-minute survey helps to determine a manufacturer’s readiness for a natural disaster.  Results from this survey will provide general, high-level areas for improvement. Take this confidential assessment and get a customized report sent to your email:
Business Continuity risk assessment – This deep-dive analysis assesses eight key business areas.  These assessments are conducted on site with a FloridaMakes Business Advisor who has knowledge and experience in manufacturing. You’ll receive a confidential report with recommendations to make your business more resilient.  Contact us today to schedule a free Business Continuity Assessment:
Regional and statewide disaster resources:
Free webinar - This on-demand webinar provides an introduction to the concepts of business continuity planning. It discusses business risks associated with hurricanes, market issues, supply chain, or other potential disruptions. We share ideas to identify risks to fortify the business, continue operating despite a crisis, and mitigate impacts to the business’ bottom line.

*Source: FEMA

Engineering Technology Leadership Institute (ETLI)

The Engineering Technology Leaders Institute (ETLI) has been held annually for 44 years in the greater Washington DC area every fall. Its purpose is to bring engineering technology educators, industry leaders, and government officials together to discuss topics of importance for future engineers. FLATE encourages Florida Engineering Technology educators to attend this important meeting when possible.  This year's theme examines the “Engineering Technology: Connecting, Building & Maintaining Relationships,” and will be held in Alexandria, VA Oct 10-11.

The conference focuses on many issues of interest to all engineering technology disciplines and the increasing number of interdisciplinary efforts. These include ABET accreditations processes; public policy issues that affect engineering technology education and its graduates; National Science Foundation (NSF) initiatives and programs and more.  ETLI also is a great place to connect with ET professionals from across the country, policymakers in Washington D.C., leaders within ASEE and ET professionals from national and international organizations.

ETLI is sponsored and produced by the ASEE (American Society of Engineering Education) Engineering Technology Council and its Executive Board.

Start Your School Year Off Right by Joining the ET (Engineering Technology) LISTERV

If you are a new educator working in Engineering Technology, we strongly urge you to join the ETD-L listserv. The ETD-L mailing list (List for the Engineering Technology Division of ASEE) is moderated by "Walter W. Buchanan” mailto:  buchananw@TAMU.EDU  and you can email him at this address with any problems.  Currently, this online community has 4,483 Engineering Technology Listserv Members; representing 1,157 Institutions September 1, 2019.  

Remember that ETD-L has recently migrated from the Listproc to the Listserv email management software program. Commands to Listproc will no longer work.  

Here is some important information about each subscription, which you should preserve for future reference. Having this information available will make it easier to recognize all the lists to which you are subscribed and in case you want to unsubscribe or temporarily disable mail delivery. NOTE: All of this information can be found on the ASEE ETD Listserv HomePage:

* The name of the list: ETD-L

The following email addresses are used for the specified purposes:
* To send an email to the list: mailto:  ETD-L@LISTSERV.TAMU.EDU
* To send commands to the LISTSERV server:mailto: LISTSERV@LISTSERV.TAMU.EDU
* To unsubscribe from the list: mailto: ETD-L-signoff-request@LISTSERV.TAMU.EDU

State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota & PGT Innovations - Certifying the Workforce of Florida for in Demand Manufacturing Careers!

Here is an amazing testimonial from MSSC Center, State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota, sharing their experience of how they partner with industry and also hear the heartwarming success story of CPT certificate, Lazaro Acosta Nunez:

"MSSC Center, State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota has provided the MSSC certification program to over 200 team members over the past 4 years to the Venice campus of PGT Innovations, the nation's leading manufacturer of impact-resistant windows and doors.
Of team members who have completed the program, the company's average retention rate is 84%; this is 18% higher than the company average. All team members who have earned a certificate have also received pay increases and 45% of all participants have received promotions.

While there are many success stories, one that stands out is Lazaro Acosta Nunez. Lazaro joined the
PGT Innovations team five years ago as a technician and did not speak a word of English. He taught himself the language and progressed quickly through the ranks to the level of Line Specialist. When he started the MSSC classes, his eyes opened wide as he was handed his books. He confessed that he had never read a book in English.

Lazaro worked harder than anyone we have ever known and passed the exams with better scores than most of his classmates. Since completing the course, he has moved into the role of Team Leader. The leadership team at PGT Innovations fully expects this amazing growth to continue throughout his career."

From MSSC community News AUGUST 2019

Tampa Bay Engineering Internship Alliance - Fall 2019 Engineering Internship Mixer

 Fall 2019 Engineering Internship Mixer
A great opportunity for students and industry to make valuable contact and to promote internships and apprenticeships for Tampa Bay Area Engineering and Technology students. Whether your interest lie in Engineering (any discipline), Machining, Electronics, Design/Drafting, Software Development or IT Systems, we welcome your participation!

Thursday, September 12th, 6:00PM - 8:15 PM

Location: Kelly Services Atrium

Students Register Online at:

Company Sponsors Register Online at:

What to expect:
Participating companies will provide a two-minute introduction to their business followed by the opportunity to network with up to 100 engineering students who are seeking internships.

Refreshments will be served.

6:00-6:30 Networking and Refreshments
6:30-7:15 Company Presentations
7:15-8:15 Networking Continues

Company sponsorship donations are used to sustain and grow the bu-annual internship mixers and allow students to attend for free. If your company wishes to support this great event please mail a suggested minimum $100 check payable to "SME Chapter 159", attention Don Patz, SME Chapter 159 Treasurer, 13157 88th Ave, Seminole, FL 33776 and email your company logo to for recognition.

To keep up to date with future Tampa Bay Engineering Internship Alliance (TBEIA) events, please join our LinkedIn Group by clicking the link below or scanning the QR code:

Thank You to Our Event Partners!
Acoustiblok Inc.
Custom Manufacturing & Engineering, Inc. (CME)
IEEE Florida West Coast - Sean Denny
Jim Shedden
Lockheed Martin
Metter Toledo
Pall Aeropower Corportation
PEMCO Conversions/Airborn Tampa
Seway Plastics Engineering LLC 

Future Technician Preparation: Security Technology

Only one technology left to introduce in this Future of Work Series.  Although the technologies introduced thus far, advanced manufacturing technology, agricultural and biotechnologies, energy, environmental technology, information technology, micro & nanotechnologies, and geospatial
technology are the headings used by the National Science Foundation Advanced Technological Education program, these categories are not exclusive labels. This caution is mentioned because our last topic, security technology, is particularly open-ended. However, it is still the intent to constrain the topic to the world of the technician and what security technology means to the “Future of Work” impacted technician. Again, the basic questions (how do new technologies influence the technical workforce and what do future technicians have to do to secure knowledge of and comfort level with related specific subsets of existing STEM connected skills?) must be addressed.

A first pass definition of one aspect of security technology, cybersecurity, is useful to start the conversation rolling and demonstrate the open-ended nature of this technology area:

It is also typical to use the phrase, information technology security, as the linking term. However, there are other common attributes within security technology: network security; application security; endpoint security; data security; identity management; database and infrastructure security; cloud security; mobile security; disaster recovery/business continuity planning; and end-user education. Clearly, the challenge is to trim the skills that encompass all these important security technologies attributes to a set or sets that make sense within the intent and constraint of a technician education frame.

The initial stage of this skill trimming challenge is to establish current expectations for specific cybersecurity technicians. A Goggle search for jobs targeted for such a technician indicate skills that are all over the map. One type of add announces the need for the following qualification set: “security foundations and framework knowledge -configuring and supporting firewalls and security solutions – Experience using Microsoft Office.”    In this example the “Experience using Microsoft Office” might represent the “all over the map” qualification.

Although the security technology landscape relative to technician education may seem to be an “OH No Mr. Bill!!” situation, that is, as with all Mr. Bill situations, far from reality. The technician profile we are exploring will not include the installation of various security devices (cameras, etc.). Nor will this technician be the prime agent that creates programs that “operate” these devices in their network environment. However, verification of the proper and appropriate operation of and access to that network I.P. addresses and critical systems will be expected of this technician.

So, as with the other initial Future of Work Series articles, we have returned full circle to their operating premise: "The work to do starts with you."! Your views of both present and future skills from an industry and education perspective are needed. Since technician preparation programs are typically constrained to a two-year (60 credit) education platform it is important to determine what is (should be) taught during this formal education period and what skills or skill applications must be left to the technician’s employer. There is an effective role for both, and the best technicians will be created from the optimal use of both resources. NSF-ATE is listening and can put its resources into action in response to what it hears so now is the time to speak up.  Think about the skills needed and the optimal time (place) to learn them. Contact us. Send us your thoughts. Please respond or send comments to Dr. Richard Gilbert:

Florida's New Career and Technical Education High School Graduation Pathway Option

Beginning with the 2019-2020 school year, a student in Florida may earn a standard high school diploma through the Career and Technical Education (CTE) pathway option. Every school district must begin offering this option. The CTE Pathway Diploma option is a great way to provide CTE experiences to more of our Florida High School students. The exposure to CTE, industry credentials, and workplace learning can help all students be more prepared for both college and careers. check wth your local school district offices to learn what pathways they are planning to offer and encourage them to offer pathways that support manufacturing careers.

To earn a standard high school diploma through the new pathway option, a student must meet the following criteria*:

  • Successfully complete a minimum of 18 credits.
  • Have a minimum, cumulative GPA of at least a 2.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  • Meet the requirements of  
    • 4 English credits
    • 4 Math credits
    • 3 Science credits
    • 3 Social studies credits
  • Complete two credits in career and technical education
  • Complete two credits in work-based learning programs.

*There are details about each of these criteria on the FLDOE website where there are also additional resources for implementing the pathways. 

Introducing the Revamped Manufacturing Day PB-Wiki Resources Page!

Manufacturing Day and Month is getting closer each day! If you are looking to participate or searching for resources to improve the students' tours experiences, then come visit the newly revamped FLATE PBWIKI Manufacturing Day Resources Page! On this page, you will find a lot of menu options to choose from on the left side of the screen. In this article, we will review the resources available under the hosts, educators, and marketing tabs.
Before we begin, we highly recommend you read FLATE Guides: Best Practices for Industry Tours! The Best Practices to Industry Tours will introduce you to manufacturing tours and will go through the steps on how to plan an impactful student tour whether you are a host or a teacher.

The “HOSTS” tab contains resources for manufacturers when preparing for their industry tours during Manufacturing Day and Month. You will find wonderful Tour Tips, handouts, informational presentations, the MFG Day Proclamation, and a link to the MFG Day’s Planning Guide! The Tour Tips and MFG Planning Guide will help you to plan your tour, inform you of previous hosts’ tactics for improving tours, and provide a way to further promote and disseminate your tour. In addition, there is a downloadable regional manufacturer’s association contact list.
As part of celebrating Manufacturing Day and Month, FloridaMakes is seeking help from Florida’s manufacturers to create a compiled video. They are requesting Florida manufacturers to make a small clip about what they make in Florida and how their products impact our daily lives. The compiled video and short clips, will be used to inspire the next generation of manufacturers so, if you are interested in participating, you can find the video making guidelines by clicking  here!

Teachers, are you looking for some fun educational opportunities for your students to learn more about manufacturing in anticipation of your class tour? The “EDUCATORS” tab contains lesson plans and informational flyers for you and your students. We currently offer three lesson plans: Pre & Post Tour Lesson Plan, Scavenger Hunt Activity, and CIS Lesson Plans. The Pre & Post Tour Lesson Plan is designed to go along with the industry tours and teaches students how STEM is connected to manufacturing.  Meanwhile, the Scavenger Hunt Activity is geared towards informing students what is manufactured in Florida by having them search the web for information. If you are looking to go more in-depth with teaching students about detailed subjects in manufacturing, we offer the CIS Lesson Plans which help students prepare and succeed in Hi-tech careers. The CIS Lesson Plans is a four-day lesson plan with eight different activities that cover: Assembly, Automation, Electronics Assembly, Materials Selection, Product Design, Quality Measures: Metrology, Subtractive Machining, and Fabrication: Welding. Each of FLATE’s lesson plans contains teacher instructions, student handouts, and presentations that can be modified based on your needs.
In addition to lesson plans, the educators' tab has informational flyers that can help students and educators alike learn the basics about manufacturing. The “Manufacturing Job Journey” and “What is Manufacturing?” flyers contain information on hourly pay for some manufacturing jobs and a quick overview of manufacturing processes and sectors.

The “Marketing” tab is home to all of the resources you could use to help promote Manufacturing
2019 MFG Day T-Shirt Design
Day and Month to your school or company. The page contains the MFG Day Proclamation template, presentations, flyers, and movies that contain statistical information on how Manufacturing Day and Month has impacted students, how important manufacturing is, and why it’s important for students to go on industry tours. In addition, we have added the 2013-2018 MFG Day-FL Data Dashboard to show how Manufacturing Day and Month’s participation has advanced over the years.
On this page, you will also find graphics that can enrich the student’s industry tour experience! We have multiple different designs that you can use such as: the MFG Day Poster, MFG Day FL Infographic, downloadable buttons, the 2019 Florida Manufacturing Day t-shirt design, and logos. Help promote Manufacturing Day and Month by downloading, using, and customizing the Company Email Signature with your logo. You can edit or use these designs as needed as long as it is not for commercial use.

Ready to host or take a tour? Then visit the Contact Page to contact your Regional Manufacturing Association or School Coordinator! For questions concerning the Manufacturing Day Resources Page, contact Elizabeth Duran ( To learn more about Manufacturing Day and Month in Florida, contact Marilyn Barger (

2019 HI-TEC Conference: Focused on the Future

The 11th Annual Hi-TEC Conference was focused on advanced technological education in 2-year credit-bearing programs.  Organized and supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF)’s Advanced Technological Education (ATE) program grantees, this conference is a hub of innovation in technical education. Two-year college educators from around the country come together to share their best practices for recruiting, engaging and retaining students in programs; to showcase the implementation of new educational technologies and strategies; and, of course, to learn about new technologies coming into the industry sectors that they support. In that regard, one important focus areas of HI-TEC 2019, was the impact of the Future of Work on preparing technicians for work in advanced technology workplaces.  This effort is led by a project funded by NSF ATE to CORD (The Center for Occupational Research and Development). Some of the questions being asked include:
What new technologies do educators need to “add” to their programs? Are there some new skills coming into (or already there!) the technician working environment?
If so, what are these skills? Are they connected to/extensions of any existing skill sets? Are they add-on skills or perhaps “replacement” skills?  What will go away?  How soon will this happen?
Will there be more common fundamental sills across disciplines?  Will research and design engineering and scientist skills move down to technicians due to IT?  And, very importantly, what do our technicians need to know and be able to do relative to systems security?

An all-day pre-conference workshop with industry professionals and educators representing all of the advanced technologies targeted by the ATE program, an industry panel and keynote speaker all tackled these questions in these different venues. After collecting data for 8 months, the pre-conference workshop team focused the participants on 3 major areas that had bubbled up from that earlier data collection: data knowledge and analysis, advanced digital literacy, and business knowledge and processes. These cross cutting “buckets” will be filled with specific knowledge and competencies that future technicians will need to be proficient in no matter what primary discipline they are studying.

No answers or solutions were discovered or uncovered. New terms were defined, new friends were made across disciplines and many ideas were pushed forward. Some topics were quickly and easily deleted from further consideration. It was good, thought provoking work and all in the interest of student technicians that we are educating today.

Two days later, a panel of industry executives talked to an audience of interested and eager conference attendees about how their companies were moving forward with advanced technologies and the future of work.  Big takeaways I heard were:
1. All are deeply engaged with new technologies.
2. It is a new and real work dynamic for any and all “production” companies. The learning curve is steep.
3. All are all pushing forward with new technologies, but still have to maintain current production for current demand and see a short-term future with significant changes. How do we install and implement new technology (robots, artificial intelligence, etc) without compromising quality and output for “today’s” customers and how to keep our workforce up to date with changes we are not even sure of ourselves?

So, yes, their workforce needs are changing, but the changes are not happening all at once.  Lifelong learning skills are key. Problem solving and critical thinking are essential. In very different ways (depending on the company), they are each trying to keep up with new technologies relevant to their work while maintaining production and quality – with any and all strategies possible.  I could only think “wow”, and that educators are on a parallel track with what and how we teach their students. 

College of Central Florida Opens Its FANUC Authorized Satellite Training (FAST) Site

June 2019  FANUC Robotics Summer Workshop at the College of Central Florida (Ocala)
The College of Central Florida (CF) now is a host of a FANUC Authorized Satellite Training site at its Ocala campus.  This is the only such training facility in Florida. Machine operators, programmers, maintenance professionals, machine tool builders can get quality hands-on certification training from this world leader in robotics and a top-notch instructor with both classroom and industry experience. Becoming a FAST site is not an easy or fast process and Sam Ajlani, Associate Professor for Engineering Technology has worked diligently with FANUC and CF to meet the criteria for equipment and instructors. Having the FAST site in Florida means that educators and industry professionals alike no longer will need to travel far to get this training.  Central Florida’s FAST site has a 200iD4s FANUC Robots and 1 Mia1 FANU Robot. 

Learn more or register at

53rd FACTE Annual Conference & Trade Show and FLATE Awards

The Florida Association of Career and Technical Education (FACTE) and Florida Association of Industrial Technical Education (FAITE) partnered up with FLATE to provide a pre-conference workshop and a full multi-session day at the FACTE summer conference and trade show July 15-17, 2019. This year’s conference was held at the Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld in Orlando and hosted approximately 650 participants representing all areas of career and technical education. The Conference provided three days of intensive and informative pre-conference sessions and tours, general sessions, workshops, focus sessions, open forums, and business meetings.  The main focus of the conference is to provide top technical and professional development as well as networking opportunities for all Career and Technical Educators and administrators. This year’s sessions included the renewed focus on apprentice and pre-apprentice, industry certifications, career academies, project-based learning, competency-based learning, and work-based learning as well as details of Perkins V implementation.

As every year, the Trade Show presented a great opportunity for all attendees to see first-hand and hands-on the latest materials, information, equipment, and services that will help fulfill and enhance their professional responsibilities. The opening welcome reception is hosted with the conference vendors to provide significant opportunity to share what is new and what is successful.

FLATE-FAITE Preconference-Technical Tours

As part of pre-conference workshops at the 2019 FACTE Conference, FLATE and FAITE, the Florida Association for Industrial & Technical Educators, co-hosted their annual “Tech Tours”. The preconference industrial and technical tours were held on July 15, and included tours to three exiting companies where participants got a first-hand look at each company’s industrial and technical operations. Tours included ABC Bus Company in the Winter Garden, FL. location, Deltamaker, and MakerFX in Orlando, FL

During the tour at the ABC Bus company, participants were able to experience the exclusive North American distributor of prestigious Van Hool motorcoaches and see the largest selection of pre-owned bus and motorcoach inventory in the country. The Deltamaker tour showed its high-performance 3D printer for education and multiple applications, and MakerFX demonstrated how shared space can be used to work on projects while sharing ideas, equipment, and knowledge.

FLATE Awards

During the Awards Breakfast on July 16, FLATE was pleased to announce the recipients of the 2019 FLATE Awards. The Awards represent FLATE’s efforts to recognize leaders who have been at the forefront of manufacturing workforce education and training. This is the eleventh year of the awards program and is one of FLATE’s many efforts to showcase and recognize the contributions of educators and industries in advancing technician education in Florida.

Congratulations to the 2019 FLATE Award winners!

FLATE Distinguished Partner Manufacturing Service Award of the Year-Michael D. Brewster, from Monin, Inc.
Manufacturing Secondary Educator of the Year Award-Michael J. Sargent, a teacher at Lake Whales Charter Schools.
Manufacturing Post-Secondary of the Year Award- Dr. Ronald D. Eaglin, an instructor at Daytona State College.

Thank you to the award sponsors D.C. Jaeger Corporation and Hoerbiger.


Sessions included panel of FLATE 2019 Award Winners and their best practices. This panel shared their experiences in areas such as economic development, industry, education, administration and presented their best practices and significant contributions toward innovative programs in support of STEM, Engineering Technology, and industrial/manufacturing education in Florida. Presenters (left to right): Michael J. Sargent, Ronald D. Eaglin, Michael D. Brewster.

Other sessions included “What it Takes: Helping Girls find their Way to Manufacturing, Industrial, and Engineering Careers” in which FLATE shared successful strategies for recruiting and retaining girls into these non-traditional career pathways for women. “FAITE Board Meeting” where participants learned about all the benefits of joining FAITE, “Drones in Education & Society”, “Teaching High School Students to Code Games” where participants explored various means to teaching at the Florida Game and Simulation electives, and “A-Z Digital Portolios” with the necessary Skills for ALL CTE.

For more information about FACTE and FAITE visit and

Visit the FLATE Wiki for more information, or contact Executive Director of FLATE, Dr. Marilyn Barger at and Associate Director of FLATE, Danielly Orozco at

Future Technician Preparation: Geospatial Technologies

With the first pass at advanced manufacturing technology, agricultural and bio-technologies, energy, environmental technology, Information technology, and micro & nano technologies under our belt it is time to start the conversation as to what Geospatial Technologies’ role is in the life of the “Future of Work” technician. The basic questions remain the same: how do new technologies influence the technical workforce and what do future technicians have to do to secure knowledge of and comfort level with related specific subsets of existing STEM connected skills?

Remember that our motivation has a twofold intent: one is for you the other is for us.  First you need to know what new technology in the workplace does generate different (possibly new) expectations for that technician workforce.  Second, we want to engage as many people interested in the development of the nation's technician workforce into the conversation as to how NSF can facilitate lowering the impact of that skills gap.

Geospatial Technology is booked ended by unforgettable visuals.  The first stages of Geospatial Technology are completely characterized by the cartoon that shows a car sailing off a cliff, the driver’s eyes in bemusement, and the GIS proudly announcing that it is “recalculating”.  This is countered by today’s TV car add showing a set of cars (as unmanned autonomous vehicles) safely proceeding down the highway.  In the first case, the GPS system was barely a GIS system that could figure out the coordinates of the car and its hapless driver, while in the self-driving care scenario, the GPS system is light years beyond GIS and performing matrix algebra on multiple sets of rapidly acquired accurate and precise coordinate information.  Thus, the tasks and duties of technicians in Geospatial Technology have changed and will continue to change.

Careers for Geospatial Technicians that focus on programming, repair, and replacement of GIS

systems will decrease as the accuracy, reliability, simplicity, and durability of the systems continue to improve.  Interestingly, the classic GIS application is still needed (with jobs available) in Australia and, presumably, other countries that are still mapping their geography. However, GPS technologies have now expanded to include technologies that must acquire, manipulate, and store geographic or spatial specific information acquired through remote sensing.   Environmental sciences applications are and will continue to be driven by seamless GPS, remote sensing, and geofencing tools.  Other career options that demand supportive STEM skills are available and unfilled. 

Unfilled skilled jobs mean that the applicant pool is not acquiring the needed skill during their education phase and/or the integration of the different skill set is not easy.  In the case of the Geospatial Technology technician the challenge is both STEM skill identification and then curriculum integration.  This reality brings us back to our perpetual closing theme.  "The work to do starts with you."

Industry and academics must help identify the new skills needed.  Remember, substantial change in curriculum requires more specific guidance from this industry.  So, as with the previous sectors of interest to ATE presented in this series, success requires people that are in all areas of this industry.   What should technician preparation programs spend the time and money on?

 NSF-ATE is listening and can put its resources into action in respond to what it hears so now is the time to speak up.  Think about the skills needed. Contact us.  Send us your thoughts.

Manufacturing Employment Data

 Georgetown University Center for Education and the Workforce and JPMorgan Chase & Co. published a new research report that explores the changing manufacturing industry and its workforce from the period following World War II through today. Upskilling and Downsizing in American Manufacturing reported that workers with post-secondary education now outnumber workers with a high school diploma or less in the industry.

The loss of nearly seven million manufacturing jobs since 1979 due to automation, globalization, and a more networked economy paralleled a shift in worker education requirements. Workers with a high school diploma or less declined from 79% of the manufacturing workforce in the 1970s to just 43% in 2016. Over the same period, the share of the manufacturing workforce with some college education but no degree grew to 26%, while the share of workers with bachelor's degrees grew to 30%.

Nevertheless, for workers with less than a bachelor's degree, manufacturing was still the largest provider of good jobs in 35 states in 2016, and it still provided 4.8 million of these jobs nationally. However, manufacturing is not expected to be a major job machine in the future, with employment expected to decline 2% or by 253,000 net jobs as of 2027.

Manufacturing News from Florida's HITEC Corridor

The HITEC Corridor's recent newsletter highlighted good news for Florida's manufacturing sector. Check out the stories below.

Gainesville Semiconductor Device Manufacturer Secures $3 Million Investment
Mattrix Technologies closed its Series A financing round with a $3 million investment from Samsung Venture Investment Corporation and JSR Corporation. A member of UF Innovate | The Hub, Mattrix has manufactured the world's first full-aperture revolutionary organic light emitting transistor display to enable the cost-effective production of large-area displays. The new funding will advance the creation of production-ready manufacturing processes and a fully integrated display prototype.

Molekule, a producer of novel air purifiers that employ groundbreaking Photo Electrochemical Oxidation (PECO) technology, is opening a manufacturing facility in the Tampa area near the existing location of its research and development team. Molekule co-founder Dr. Yogi Goswami was a recipient of the Matching Grants Research Program from the Florida High Tech Corridor Council, which he used to refine the company's PECO technology in partnership with USF.

MSSC's 2019 Annual Meeting Spotlights Wisconsin, Gateway Technical College, and Foxconn

The annual two-day MSSC Executive Leadership and Briefing meeting is regularly held in states and regions that have played a vital role in the development of credentialing tomorrow's workforce. The 2019 meeting was held in Racine Wisconsin, site of the prospective 13,000-worker Foxconn production site and home to Gateway Technical College, a strong supporter of MSSC. Day one started with the meetings of the MSSC community including the MSSC Board of Directors, the Leadership Council, Training Solution Providers, Senior Advisors and more. Three new members were welcomed to the board and four new members were added to the MSSC Leadership Council demonstrating the growing community around the MSSC credentials. A number of new initiatives were unveiled, and new partners introduced throughout the meeting. Dr. Barger has sereved on the Leadership Council since its inception, representing the strong presence of the CPT and CPT+ in Florida Colleges and High Schools.

The "Executive Briefing: Focus on Wisconsin," kicked off with a reception which included influential speakers from the state of Wisconsin, starting with Nick Pinchuk, eloquent Chairman & CEO, Snap-on Incorporated. One key quote from his remarks is provided here.

Dr. Bryan Albrecht, CEO, and President, Gateway Technical College (GTC), welcomed attendees to the second day of the Executive Briefing on the GTC. This gathering of senior representatives from industry, government, and education offered a chance to network and share best practices on mutually reinforcing local and national initiatives.

For more information, please visit

Nominations Now Open for MI STEP AHEAD Awards

The Manufacturing Institute’s (MI) STEP Women’s Initiative is dedicated to fostering a 21st-century manufacturing workforce that honors and promotes the role of women at all levels of the manufacturing industry, from the factory floor to the C-suite. One important way they do so is by recognizing exceptional women in manufacturing at the annual STEP Ahead Awards gala and empowering those honorees to pay it forward with tools to mentor and inspire the next generation. Over the past seven years, MI has honored more than 900 women who have demonstrated excellence and leadership in science, technology, engineering, and production (STEP) careers—and has provided them with important leadership training to mentor tomorrow’s female manufacturing leaders through an associated two-day professional development program.

There are many deserving women in manufacturing in Florida. Please consider nominating peers or colleagues of yours who deserve recognition and whose stories can encourage others to follow their lead.  Visit to submit your nomination. For any questions or more information, feel free to access the Nominations Guide Toolkit which contains helpful information to get started or please contact the Institute’s STEP Ahead team at

The nomination period will close October 4, 2019.

Easy to Implement STEM - Engineering Program

Check out this novel STEM program for middle school youth.  Each activity highlights a different STEM concept and career so kids are exposed to the broad scope and inclusivity of STEM.  The Engineering Design Process is the scaffolding for each guided design activity and kids gain a deeper understanding of the process and its constructs.  Kids are armed with the design challenge, specifications/constraints and the design criteria before they start designing, building and evaluating their solutions.  Each of the 22 activities take about 75 min. are highly engaging and include:
WuGGs to the Rescue!  Design a shoe (a WuGG) with limited materials and try walking in a variety of conditions – wet, uphill, downhill, fast and slow.
Prosthetic Challenge: Gain a deeper understanding of prosthetic devices and empathy for users.  Design, create and use a prosthetic leg made with every day materials.
Lemonade Taste-off: Create your own lemonade by learning about flavor and making it from scratch with fresh lemon zest & juice, sugar and water. Let judges decide their preference in a taste-off.
The activities are collaborative and social, focusing on fun and hands-on.  If your club has computers or tablets, this program can be up and running in as short as a week. Facilitator training is done virtually (online) and kids combine virtual and hands-on investigation.  This blended format for learning drives engagement and has been proven that youth make sound academic connections, more so than in either modality by itself.  Supplies are readily available and can be viewed/ordered online or purchased locally.  To learn more contact To check out a sample activity or to subscribe please visit

Florida will Offer Professional Engineering Licenses for BSET Graduates of Florida!

After so many years of work towards this, Engineering Technology students now are able to sit for the PE (professional Engineer License) in Florida. HB 827/SB 616 was signed by Governor Ron DeSantis on Friday, June 7, 2019.   This bill, proposed by FES (Florida Engineering Society) and ACEC-FL, will go into effect October 1, 2019. The next steps are for the Florida Board of Professional Engineers (FBPE) to create rules in Administrative Code 61G15.  The bill:

Removes the requirement that engineers obtain a separate engineering business license (certificate of authorization) for their engineering firm;
  • Allows a licensed engineer to qualify an engineering business and provides requirements for such
  • Requires a temporary registration instead of a temporary certificate of authorization for out-of-state engineering businesses
  • Requires successor engineers to assume full responsibility when assuming the work of another engineer and releases an original engineer from liability for prior work assumed by the successor engineer
  • Prohibits a local government from contracting for construction engineering inspections with the same entities that perform design services on the same project when a project is wholly or partially funded by FDOT under Ch. 337
  • Clarifies the types of projects that require a special inspection
  •  Allows graduates with a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering to sit for the PE Exam prior to completion of the 4-year experience requirement (4 years of experience is still required before the license is approved), and allows graduates with a Bachelor Degree in Engineering Technology to obtain a PE license with 6 years of experience 
  • Requires applicants for licensure to submit proof of being 18 years of age or older 
  • Allows the Board to toll the timeframe that an application must be granted or denied in certain circumstances instead of requiring automatic denial
  • Allows Boards that regulate professions under Ch. 455, F.S., to accept applications from applicants with a voided license without completely repeating the initial application process 
  • Revises provisions related to alternate plans review by private providers under ch. 553


Atlantic Tech Students Earn White Belt Certifications

Our machining program at Atlantic Technical College & Technical High School is a year-round program. So, our great high school juniors give up their summer vacation to attend the program. 
This year we were very lucky to have Mr. Reinke from The Continuous Improvement Institute (Cii) lead a Lean/Six Sigma training program for our machining students.
The training was wonderful, this topic is at the core of manufacturing/machining.  We were very lucky to have someone with Mr. Reinke history in Six Sigma and the ability to teach the material.
Mr. Reinke had the students complete a real-world project in the machining program. He also covered all related material to acquire White Belt Certification.

We see this as an important addition to the student mindset and toolset, setting them apart from others by giving them a certification highly desired by industry. All 11 High School juniors passed their White Belt certification! 

FSCJ tech lab trains cutting edge of wastewater treatment

Florida State College at Jacksonville recently opened its new Instrumentation and Control Technology Center, a lab of advanced equipment used for student training. The lab is the result of about $550,000 funded from a National Science Foundation grant and donations from Rayonier (NYSE: RYN), U.S. Gypsum Co. and other donors and is part of a college-wide initiative to pair students and workforce needs. "Education is workforce investment, and workforce investment is ultimately economic development," Douglas Brauer, FSCJ Dean of Engineering and Industry.

The center also includes a miniature wastewater treatment plant donated by OnSyte Performance. The plant is designed to handle waste for single family homes, ranging from three to eight bedrooms. The plant can be considered as an alternative to the 250 septic tanks that are currently installed in Florida every day and, therefore, a possible solution to the eventual phase out of all septic tanks in the state.

The plant cycles waste and water multiple times to repeat a biological treatment process until 90 percent of its nitrogen has been removed and the water reaches drip line standards. The cleaned water is then released to irrigate the surrounding area. No chemicals are used in the process. The concrete molds are poured in Palatka, and the electronics are manufactured in Jacksonville. "We've planted our first flag here in Jacksonville," said Senior Vice President Jeff Littlejohn.

Training on the miniature facility, which is remotely controlled, allows FSCJ students to be at the forefront of their deployment and positions FSCJ as the training center for this technology.

Taken from by Will Robinson - Reporter, Jacksonville Business Journal June 12, 2019, 8:08AM, EDT.