FLATE’s Engineering Technology Degree Featured in Science Nation

Florida Advanced Technological Education Center’s (FLATE) award winning, A.S. degree in engineering  technology was featured in Science Nation as part of a series of special reports from the National Science Foundation. The video which will be released on Feb. 7, 2013, takes a look at the two year degree in engineering technology created by FLATE, and its pioneering role in laying a pathway for students to earn industry-certified credentials that articulate to the degree now offered at half of Florida’s state colleges. The two-year program seamlessly transfers to B.S. and B.A.S. programs throughout colleges in Florida. Principal Investigator and Executive Director of FLATE, Dr. Marilyn Barger says the program is geared to empower students with the knowledge and relevant skills-set that are not only in high demand and highly paid, but are equally transferable across various industry sectors.

The Engineering Technology (ET) associate of science degree and certificate programs conceived, engineered and coordinated by FLATE is the first of its kind to offer a cohesive, comprehensive, fully articulated inter-institutional program. The degree is built on a set of core classes that covers concepts in computer aided drafting, electronics, instrumentation and testing, processes and materials, quality and safety. “These core skills support the Florida workforce, and align with the national Manufacturing Skill Standards Council (MSSC) Certified Production Technician (CPT) certification, providing value-added benefits to industry” Barger said. A valid MSSC CPT credential articulates to 15 credit hours of the ET degree’s technical core in any of 14 colleges offering the degree in the state. The MSSC CPT is also one component of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) endorsed Stackable Certification System (SCS). This SCS system aligns industry validated credentials with academic programs and occupations supporting all manufacturing sectors.

FLATE worked closely with community colleges and industries across Florida to develop the program, and partnered with the Florida Department of Education Division of Adult and Career Education and Workforce Florida to address a growing need to supply manufacturers and high technology industries with qualified, highly skilled workers in the foreseeable future. Dr. Celeste Carter, ATE program director for the Division of Undergraduate Education at NSF says “FLATE is providing strong leadership in the vitally important area of advanced manufacturing, and is impacting both regionally and nationally the education of technicians in the fields of advanced manufacturing.” The ET Core coupled with a second year degree specialization prepares students for many jobs in manufacturing and many other high-technology industries.

You can watch the Science Nation video below on FLATER Tube at www.youtube.com/madeinflorida2010, or contact Dr. Marilyn Barger at barger@fl-ate.org. For information on Science Nation visit www.nsf.gov/news/special_reports/science_nation  and www.fl-ate.org.

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