Training workers for existing jobs in manufacturing is often the best way to create a skilled talent pipeline.
To this end, the Indiana Manufacturers Association launched an employer-driven education initiative last month called The Indiana Federation for Advanced Manufacturing Education (INFAME). Working with regional manufacturers and educational institutions a dual-track training will be created that includes both classwork and hands-on training.
“This initiative allows those of us in manufacturing to have direct input on developing the skills we need in our future employees,” said Matt Linville, HR Director at Zimmer Biomet.
When students complete the course they will earn an associate degree that can move seamlessly to a bachelor’s degree program and will have two years of relevant, paid job experience that they can take immediately to the workplace.
“Toyota is excited to partner with the Indiana Manufacturers Association in launching the FAME model in Indiana to address the needs of our manufacturing industry,” said Millie Marshall, president of Toyota Manufacturing Indiana, Inc. “The FAME program has a track record of developing a pipeline of the highly skilled workers who are excellent problem solvers and creating opportunities for participants to jumpstart their careers.”
The nationally-recognized FAME model currently operates in nine states. In Indiana, local FAME chapters will give businesses the chance to work with the IMA on education programs that meet their specific needs. Higher education partners such as Ivy Tech Community College and Vincennes University will provide tailored associate degree programs that will allow students to move into bachelor’s degree programs if they choose.
INFAME will start by offering an Advanced Manufacturing Technician (AMT) program. The AMT curriculum includes electricity, fluid power, motor controls, maintenance of industrial equipment, programmable logic controllers (PLCs), welding, machining, drawings, robotics and troubleshooting. Students are also equipped with personal development skills such as attendance, communication, innovation, teamwork, and interpersonal relations. In addition to classwork, students will get practical work experience at an area manufacturer. AMT also teaches students safety culture, workplace organization, lean manufacturing, machinery maintenance and reliability and problem solving. In the future, employers who participate in the program can tailor educational programs to their specific needs.