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.

2019 FLATE Awardees to Receive Special Recognition at the Annual FACTE Conference

Educators and manufacturers play an integral role in educating and training the next generation of manufacturers. To acknowledge their contributions to manufacturing, FLATE has developed a prolific awards program that recognizes “Rockstars of Manufacturing” who have and continue to make a significant impact in support of technology education and training across Florida. This year's nominees for the 2019 FLATE Awards include a distinguished panel of individuals who for a number of years have made significant strides in promoting manufacturing and technology education and training across the state.

At the secondary education level, Michael J. Sargent, an engineering instructor at Lake Wales Charter School will receive the 2019 FLATE Manufacturing Secondary Educator-of-the-Year Award. Originally from upstate New York, Sargent started his foray into the world of manufacturing as a mathematics and engineering teacher for Polk County Schools (PCS). While working for PCS he became the first authorized MSSC instructor for Polk County high schools. At the time Sargent was tasked with creating Florida's first nationally accredited manufacturing engineering high school program and related outreach initiatives through the National Career Academy Coalition. As a result of his efforts 44 high school students earned the MSSC CPT certification. Sargent believes “education at the high school level is important as it exposes students to the diversity of jobs and skills needed to succeed.” As a  proponent of increasing female awareness and presence in the world of engineering, in 2018 Sargent partnered with the Society of Women Engineers at the University of Central Florida to create a mentoring program for female high school students to receive guidance and connections from female engineering students at the University of Central Florida.

Most recently Sargent is working on establishing a dual-enrollment program between Lake Wales Charter High School and Polk State College's Advanced Manufacturing Training Center. This partnership is set to enable high school students at Lake Wales Charter High School to earn MSSC certification as well as an Associates in Applied Engineering Technology. Sargent is working with a coalition of local manufacturing partners to provide the next generation of skilled workers. When not teaching, he spends time with his wife and two children. He can also be found teaching scuba diving courses and/or participating in reef restoration programs.

At the post-secondary level, Ronald D. Eaglin, Ph.D., has been selected for the Distinguished Manufacturing Post-Secondary Educator-of-the-Year Award. Dr. Eaglin currently serves as the professor and Chair of the Department of Engineering and Information Technology at Daytona State College in Daytona, FL. Eaglin has enjoyed a long and illustrious career both as a distinguished educator and an entrepreneur. His academic credentials include a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of South Carolina where he graduated Magna Cum Laude. He holds an M.S. and a Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering from the University of Central Florida. He also holds a special Honors Degree from South Carolina College. In the academic sphere, Dr. Eaglin has held several esteemed positions serving as the Associate Vice President for the College of Technology and Chair of the Engineering Technology program at Daytona State College (DSC). Prior to joining DSC, Dr. Eaglin was the Chair of the Engineering Technology program and the Assistant Dean for Distributed Learning College of Engineering at the University of Central Florida.

Dr. Eaglin is credited with establishing many academic programs both at DSC and at UCF. He played a leading role in formulating the curriculum frameworks for the A.S.E.T specializations in mechatronics and additive manufacturing at DSC. He has also worked on the ABET accreditation of the BSET and BSIT degrees at DSC. In addition to his ongoing offices and responsibilities, Eaglin serves as the coordinator of all engineering technology class assignment as the statewide course number representative and is an active member of the Florida Engineering Technology Forum, a statewide entity responsible for coordination of engineering technology programs across Florida.

Given his years in academia and the corporate world, Dr. Eaglin has many accolades under his belt. Dr. Eaglin is a renowned author of several professional publications, journals and presentations. He is a recipient of the Christopher Columbus Foundation Award for Innovation in Homeland Security. He is also among the “Who's Who” of students in American Universities and College, and has been a long-term member of the Phi Beta Kappa and Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honors Society.  Outside his professional commitments, Eaglin serves as the President of the Central Florida Adventure Racing club that promotes outdoor activity, health and fitness for all ages. He is a Central Florida United soccer coach and is a past president and current member of the Central Florida Orienteering Club.

When it comes to manufacturing education and training, Michael D. Brewster has occupied a commanding presence and held formidable roles in promoting excellence in the corporate world of manufacturing. Early last month, the FLATE Awards committee selected Brewster for the FLATE Distinguished Partner-of-the-Year award that recognizes key industry personnel for outstanding contributions to promoted technology education and career awareness in support of manufacturing across Florida.

Brewster's leadership in the manufacturing arena is rooted in his longstanding commitment to world-class talent development in the manufacturing workforce. For Brewster it is all about the people, the faces and forces behind the world of manufacturing. He believes “a manufacturing company will only go as far as its employee talent pool will carry it.” Brewster states job satisfaction in manufacturing comes from leadership commitment to learning and opportunities for formal training for all employees to reach their full potential.

Brewster's commitment to excellence in manufacturing and related careers started decades ago. He has been engaged in food manufacturing since 1996 developing his career at Perry's Ice Cream, Jasper Products, Winn-Dixie Manufacturing, Dunkin Brands and Tampa Bay CoPack. His food and beverage experience includes developing aseptic products like soy, milk, rice, protein drinks, juices, donuts, teas and sports drinks. Brewster joined Monin in 2014 as the Vice President of Plant Operations and currently serves as the Chief Production Officer at Monin Americas.

Community outreach is a cornerstone of Brewster's contributions to manufacturing.  Key contributions include engagement in diverse initiatives across the state. He was nominated as a key participant in the Talent Pipeline Management Manufacturing Collaborative. He was the speaker at the American Manufacturing Summit in Chicago, IL. He is a member of the Pinellas County Coalition to Tallahassee and sponsored the Clearwater High School robotics team. Brewster has been a leading proponent of Manufacturing Day events and has partnered with FLATE on various MFG Day activities in the Tampa Bay region. Through Monin Americas, he served as a sponsor for the Manufacturing Day 5K Run-Walk-Paddle for Education. Since 2015 he has hosted several Manufacturing Day tours for Pinellas County School District. He is also member of several regional Manufacturers Associations serving as the Vice President for Bay Area Manufacturers Association (BAMA), member of the Board of Directors for BAMA and the Upper Tampa Bay Manufacturers Association and Chair of the BAMA Scholarship Committee. He is an avid advocate for hiring people with special needs and co-founded BAMA's veterans support committee.

FLATE extends its heartiest congratulations on this top honor to all the 2019 FLATE Awards recipients.
The Awards represent FLATE's commitment to recognize colleagues who have made significant contributions to the outreach, education and training of today's advanced manufacturing workforce. Awards will be presented during the 53rd Annual FACTE Conference & Trade Show from July 15-17, at the Renaissance Orlando Sea World Resort in Orlando, FL. For more information about the FLATE Awards program, or to submit a nomination for 2020 FLATE Awards visit You can also contact Dr. Marilyn Barger at 813.25.6578, or at

Sustainability Superheroes Features Industry Panel Discussing Sustainable Business Practices with Educators

Sustainable manufacturing is an objective that many companies are adopting as an essential part of their operations, which is making an impactful difference for the environment. Design, production, shipping and all other aspects within the manufacturing process must be examined from a sustainable perspective. This also improves the safety of employees, products and communities as a whole. Everyone is affected in some way, which is why the Sustainability Superheroes project brought manufacturing to the classroom for the May 7th workshop.
Dr. Deborah Kozdras, Chief Creative Officer of the USF Stavros Center, partnered with Dr. Marilyn Barger, Executive Director of the Florida Advanced Technological Education Center (FLATE), to host a panel of business and industry professionals with experience in the manufacturing industry for the workshop. Educators were able to learn how companies integrate habits and practices that are environmentally friendly into the core of their operations. “It’s so important for educators to hear directly from industry.  Educators are really hungry to know more about industry, how and where other non-educator people work, and what skills they need “, says Dr. Barger. FLATE and the USF Stavros Center have a long-standing partnership focused on providing professional development workshops for secondary educators in all disciplines that specifically highlight manufacturing professionals in the greater Tampa Bay area.
Below are highlights from the panelists. This project plans to recapture the comments of the panelists as well as other industry representatives in a series of audio clips that will be posted on both FLATE’s and Stavros Center’s websites.  Be on the lookout for these videos starting this fall!
*Pictured from left to right: Dr. Marilyn Barger, Patti Gander, Jerrika Rice, Suzanne Alverez, Peter Cirak

Patti Gander - Executive Director for the Manufacturing and Supply Chain Alliance
Patti demonstrated a great example of design thinking and an open mindset. Using traditional business analysis practices, like Six Sigma and Lean Manufacturing, Patti illustrated how businesses can profit from sustainable practices, which ultimately have positive impacts on the triple bottom line: people, planet and profit.

Jerrika Rice - Senior Manager, Phosphates Quality for The Mosaic Company
Jerrika provided the educators with a deeper understanding of the challenges The Mosaic Company faces and the ways in which they are working toward more sustainable practices. By describing the complexities of the issues, Jerrika provided some excellent problem-solution examples.

Suzanne Alverez - Sales for C&D Printing & Packaging
Suzanne described the sustainability challenges and solutions within C&D Printing and Packaging. Beginning with one employee’s question about the toxicity of the processes, the company is continually evolving to more environmentally safe products and procedures.

Peter Cirak - Director of Quality Assurance for Seal Dynamics
Peter illustrated his passion for creating solutions in the workplace at Seal Dynamics. During Tuesday evening’s session, he described the recycling programs he initiated and stood as a model for how one person can work toward changing the ways in which things have always been done. 

​Sustainability Superheroes is a project that helps K-12 educators teaching all subjects and grade levels to incorporate sustainability into their lesson plans. The Gus A. Stavros Center for Free Enterprise and Economic Education partnered with the University of South Florida’s Patel College for Global Sustainability to provide workshops, new training and guest lectures to teachers across Tampa Bay. The goal of this project is to educate students about sustainability problems that need to be fixed and inspire them to act and make a positive impact on the world.  The USF Stavros Center received a grant from the Coca-Cola Foundation for this project. Sustainability Superheroes will provide related resources to the Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk and Sarasota school districts, which together serve over 550,000 students annually.

FLATE’s Linked In Engineering Technology Community Group

FLATE welcomes Engineering Technology alumni, teachers, and industry personnel to the new Linked In Group: Engineering Technology Community! Linked-in is a professional platform made for companies and individuals, it’s essentially the business version of Facebook. With LinkedIn you can follow other companies, find jobs by uploading your resume, have a place to share your projects, share events, create job postings, and create a professional profile.  By joining the Engineering Technology Community, you can get notified when connected companies have open positions, professional development opportunities, stay informed on industry news, share your experiences with current Engineering Technology students, and more! Join the group today by following this link or scanning the QR code below! You can also follow FLATE’s company page for the Engineering Technology Community at this link: click me!

Follow us on our other social networking platforms: Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter  @Made_InFlorida using #IndustryEducationPartnerships.

For more information contact FLATE at 813-259-6578 or For assistance with signing up contact Elizabeth Duran at

Manufacturing Day/Month in Florida 2019 - It's Time to Start Planning!

FLATE is interested in helping companies, manufacturing associations, and everyone else in offering student tours in celebration of Manufacturing Day. Tours are an excellent way to introduce students to the world of work, expose them to the exciting world of manufacturing, and educate them on the great skill, high wage careers that the industry offers. Teachers love the tours as well since they often have little exposure to the world of manufacturing. The tours give teachers an opportunity to gain knowledge of the cool, high tech equipment and tools they see when visiting manufacturing facilities, which will inspire them to pass on their Manufacturing Day experience to the next generation.
Summer has just begun, but here are some early updates for Manufacturing Day/Month 2019 in Florida from two of our partners: First Coast Manufacturers Association (FCMA) and South Florida Manufacturers Association (SFMA). First Coast Manufacturers Association (FCMA) has 30 companies in the Jacksonville area already signed up to host tours in October. Hoerbiger Corporation, a member of the South Florida Manufacturers Association (SFMA) reported that they will host ten tours for ten schools during the month of October. It's definitely time to start planning student tours. 
Check out our website and wiki sites for resources for MFG DAY 2019 student tours.  New resources for 2019 will be available by July 1st. In the meantime, you can see what was available in 2018 and read about the impact these tours had on students, teachers, and parents.  Don't hesitate to contact us for more information!

FLATE' Summer Workshop Series a Great Professional Development Opportunity for Florida Educators

FLATE's professional development workshops support the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) goals for advancing technological education emphasizing on hands-on technical training along with development, application, assessment of technology-related curriculum, and strategies for recruitment and retention of students in technology programs. FLATE works with key partners such as the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council (MSSC), the Florida Association for Career and Technical Education (FACTE), Hillsborough County Public Schools, and the new NSF partnership with College Lake County (Illinois), Anne Arundel Community College (Maryland), and Florida State College at Jacksonville.

From 2005 to 2019, FLATE has provided 47,736 hours of professional development to 36,382 educators and 13,062 workforce, economic and manufacturing personnel in multi-day workshops, presentations, and through online webinars at hundreds of events in Florida, nationally, and worldwide.
Among all the workshops, the most popular is the FLATE-FACTE Project Based Summer Workshops Series for career and technical educators (CTE) in Florida.  The first two of these two-day workshops’ series, which was held at Hillsborough Community College-Brandon Campus, were Robotics & 3D Printing on May 9th to the 10th, and Integrated Technology Projects on May 16th to the 17th.  During the first workshop, Robotics & 3D Printing, participants learned how to build and code the Lego EV3 robots; used Sketch Up CAD software and the Makerbot 3D printer. The second workshop, Integrated Technology Projects, participants were immersed in a variety of technology education projects in fields such as civil engineering, aerospace, and electronics technology.

Educators from around the state who answered the survey, 100% (13) found both workshops to be of great professional development value, and anticipate that as a result of attending the workshop they will share and use FLATE, Made in Florida available educational resources. Additionally over 95% of the attendees agreed that the overall workshop was very good or excellent.

Here are some comments from participants:

“Best workshop of the year, worth the 3-hr drive”
“Great training. I loved learning about 3D printing and robotics. Also, it was fun and engaging”

Additionally, FLATE will be hosting two more summer workshops: the FANUC Robot Training Workshop for teachers on June 17th through 19th at Central Florida College (CF) in Ocala, and the Summer Working Connections Introduction to Mechatronics on July 8th through 12th at Florida State College-Jacksonville (FSCJ).

The four-day FANUC workshop, sponsored by FACTE, at CF will focus on how to deliver instructions on robotics in the classroom using FANUC’s Certified Education Robot Training (CERT) program. The CERT is the ideal platform for teaching how to program a real industry-grade robot, in real time, in a safe and controlled environment.

The Summer Working Connections introduction to Mechatronics at FSCJ is a key element of CollaboATE, a NSF funded project in partnership with Anne Arundel Community College (Maryland), College of Lake County (Illinois) and Florida State College at Jacksonville (Florida). This workshop will provide hands-on activities in mechatronics concepts including basic electrical theory, programmable logic controllers (PLCs), and pneumatics.
For more information about CTE workshops contact Dr. Marilyn Barger, Executive Director of FLATE at or visit flate-professional development opportunities

Florida Colleges Participate in the Make More Summit to Focus on the Future of Florida’s Manufacturing

The second annual MAKE MORE Manufacturing Summit was a leadership-focused meeting designed around connecting ecosystem stakeholders with the needs and realities of industry leaders from the manufacturing sector. The Summit is produced by FloridaMakes, the NIST Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NIST MEP) in Florida. Well over 200 stakeholders and attendees participated in the event in Orlando the last week of May. The Summit agenda included dynamic keynote speakers, TED-style talks coupled with panel discussions that laid the foundation for Florida’s manufacturing stakeholders, public and private, begin to leverage their collective assets and capabilities. Ted talks and panel sessions focused on workforce, business climate, and emerging technologies. The goal of the annual event is to strengthen the industry collectively for a more competitive manufacturing sector.
FLATE together with five of its community college partners attended the MakeMore Summit.  Sam Ajlani from the College of Central Florida, Lara Sharp from St. Pete College, Dante Leon from Daytona State College, Erik Christensen from South Florida College and Rick Frazier formerly from Tallahassee Community College attended to learn more about the state of manufacturing in Florida and, especially to learn more about statewide current and future workforce needs. “Most manufacturers just don’t know what great 2-year technical programs we have in Florida that support manufacturers.  Not only do we have state-of-the-art labs, but we also have subject matter experts teaching every course in every program. We offer flexible delivery, hybrid (in class and online), and 100% online courses. However, all manufacturing courses do have a hands-on component, but most are offered at flexible times. Not only do the programs offer strong technical skills, but students enrolled also learn important workplace skills. And, the colleges provide many important wrap-around services for students to help with transportation, child care, scholarships, and advising. Finally, the colleges all have strong articulated pathways to 4-year engineering technology and management bachelor’s degrees for graduates from their programs for continued upward career mobility. All these industry representatives should contact FLATE to get connected to their local community or state college Engineering Technology program if they are not already working with them.”

Sam Ajlani was interested in the emerging technologies which generated discussions about what new core and fundamental skills we would need to integrate into our engineering technology and manufacturing degree programs.  “Technology is changing so fast and is relatively cheap that the ROI for implementation of Industry 4.0 technologies can be fast realized. But companies must be up to speed, invest in not only the technology and expertise to implement but also in training and educating its workforce to get the maximum return on investment.”  Again, this is an issue right at the sweet spot of the 2-year technical manufacturing programs.”

Dr. Marilyn Barger, Executive Director of FLATE gave one of the TED talks in the Talent Development session. Its vitally important the manufacturers learn more about their state, community and technical college programs. The college house great state-of-the-art laboratories for advanced manufacturing that the taxpayers of Florida have paid for!  She urged all attendees to get to know their local college programs and program managers who can help each manufacturer meet talent needs. She also urged everyone to help change the perception of manufacturing.  Our communities need to know that manufacturing careers and jobs are high skill, high wage and now provide work on the cutting edge of technology.

Kevin Carr, CEO of FloridaMakes, is singularly focused on improving the productivity of Florida’s small and medium manufacturers. He was excited to share an improvement in Florida’s manufacturing productivity and urged the attendees to keep focused on improvements that could continue the upward trend.  This leading indicator of the industry’s “health” reflects the strength of the business climate, talent development, and new technology integration.

The event showcase provided a place for networking and for visiting the finalists of the annual Small and Medium Business Excellence annual awards. Thirty-three Florida companies were named as finalists after a rigorous Sterling review and comprehensive site visit for this year’s Florida Sterling Manufacturing Business Excellence Awards. The awards, recognizing high performing manufacturers in six categories, are announced and presented at this prestigious statewide formal event.  You can learn more about the SMBE awards at the FloridaMakes website and learn about this year’s winners!

You can learn more about the 2-year Engineering Technology degree that supports manufacturing by contacting Dr. Marilyn Barger ( or visiting the FLATE website.

NSF's Advanced Technological Education (ATE) Program Resources for 2-Year Technical Programs

 As the deadline for NSF ATE proposals approaches (October 3), here are some reminders about the NSF ATE Community, its many resources for all technician educators and stakeholders and dissemination platforms. Most all resources and opportunities are FREE for partially subsidized.  FLATE encourages everyone to take advantage of these and reach out to the grantees at any time for information. Here is a message from ATE Central with a  great summary of the NSF ATE Community resources.
One of the things that really sets the NSF's ATE program apart is the amazing amount of support baked into the community through a variety of informal and formal pathways. There are so many ways to get support, whether you're writing your first proposal, looking to improve your project or center evaluation, or considering better ways to sustain the valuable deliverables created with your NSF funding. A number of ATE initiatives focus on supporting and amplifying the work of those in the ATE community, which means you can almost always find help on a wide variety of topics by perusing a website, picking up the phone, or crafting an email.
First of all, let's start with the ATE home page on the National Science Foundation site – a great place to visit as it provides an overview of the ATE program, contact information for the associated program officers (and their contact info), and examples of recent awards. And of course, the ATE solicitation provides detailed information about the program and outlines key concerns of the funding agency, budgetary guidelines, and programmatic requirements.
Now let's take a look at a variety of ATE projects, centers, and events designed to support, showcase, and/or amplify the work of ATE grantees.
·         With three key deliverables – the ATE Impacts book (order free copies here), and the ATE Impacts blog as well as the ATE Community booth - the ATE Collaborative Outreach and Engagement Project helps showcase the impacts of the ATE program. The book and blog are great sources of information about what others in the community are doing and a great way to find collaborators and mentors. The Community Booth showcases ATE materials at a number of national and regional conferences each year.
·         EvaluATE is the evaluation support center for ATE and provides webinars, resource materials, newsletters, workshops, and opportunities for ATE community members to engage around issues related to evaluation in the pursuit of excellence in technical education.
·         The Mentor-Connect project, spearheaded by South Carolina Advanced Technical Education (SC ATE), provides support for leadership development and knowledge transfer by developing and supporting potential, current, and former ATE grantees. The Mentor-Connect website provides an extensive library of materials related to ATE proposal preparation and grants management.
·         Another great mentoring program is MentorLinks, from the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), which sponsors national grant competitions that pair community colleges seeking guidance in developing or strengthening technician education programs with experienced mentors in the field. Through professional development opportunities and technical assistance, MentorLinks impacts numerous fields, from biotechnology to renewable energy.
·         Another excellent resource is TeachingTechnicians that provides "state-of-the-art, faculty development in advanced & emerging technologies, teaching methods, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM)." The site provides links to online and onsite events, and boasts an impressive archive of previous events with files, links, and contact information.
·         And of course, there is also ATE Central, which acts an information hub and archive for the ATE Community. Visit the portal to explore grantee resources, learn about ATE events (and push your own activities out to the community) and dive into critical topics like sustainability. The map on the ATE Central home page can help you find other projects and centers doing work in your field of study or that are close by geographically – it's a great tool to use in considering potential collaborators or mentors.
·         Finally, the Annual ATE PI Conference held each October in DC (the 2019 program isn't up yet so we've linked to the 2018 information here) is a wonderful source to learn more about any number of innovative ATE-related topics, meet up with collaborators and connect with your NSF program officer. The HI-TEC conference is another great opportunity to connect with ATE community members – held in July each year in a different city (this year the conference is in St. Louis).

Who do you turn to for help and support or conversely how are you supporting others in the ATE community? We'd love to hear your stories and share your resources through ATE Central's Connection newsletter or the ATE Impacts blog – please drop us a line!