A new program from America Makes in Youngstown, Ohio, the national manufacturing innovation institute for additive manufacturing, and the Ohio Development Services Agency will help train high school students in additive manufacturing technologies.
The Ohio Secondary Education Additive Manufacturing Training Network will help build the talent pipeline in that industry by providing education and training to students and their educators. Participating schools will also receive a "middle school toolkit," to increase interest early and "technology packages of six Dremel DigiLab 3D45 Advanced Idea Builder 3D Printer bundles with materials and supplies," a news release stated.
Ten high schools statewide will take part in the program initially, according to the release. In Northeast Ohio, that includes Ashtabula County Technical and Career Center, MCCTC and Valley Stem, the Windham Exempted Village Schools and Theodore Roosevelt High School.
"There's no question that our state and our nation are facing a significant skilled labor shortage and misalignment of skills and competencies," said Josh Cramer, America Makes education and workforce development director, in the release.
"We need to take action now with K-12 students, with immediate emphasis on focusing on secondary education students and empowering their educators — from teachers to principals and guidance counselors — to help them increase students' awareness of AM technologies and advanced manufacturing careers," he said. "The awareness vacuum around manufacturing career opportunities is an even larger issue than the skills gap. With the creation of the Ohio Secondary Education Additive Manufacturing Training Network, we are building that critically needed additive talent pipeline across the state of Ohio."