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Assessing School-to-Career Pathways for Manufacturing in Rural Communities: Further Investigation of Advanced Manufacturing Programs in Northwest Florida

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

NSF Grantees: Workforce Development

Tagged Topics

Diversity and NSF Grantees Poster Session

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Paper Authors


Marcia A. Mardis Florida State University Orcid 16x16

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Marcia A. Mardis is a Professor and Associate Dean at Florida State University's College of Communication & Information and Associate Director of the Information Institute. Author of numerous publication and recipient of over two decades of federally funded research grants, Dr. Mardis' work focuses on professional identity creation, educational text and data mining, and technician education improvement.

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Faye R. Jones Florida State University Orcid 16x16

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Faye R. Jones is a Senior Research Associate at Florida State University’s College of Communication and Information. Her research interests include STEM student outcomes and the exploration of student pathways through institutional research.

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In response to a nationwide call to keep manufacturing in step with rapid technological change, in this NSF Grantees Poster Session, we will share findings to-date from a three-year Advancing Technological Education Targeted Research project to empirically document school-to-career pathways enabled by the advanced manufacturing (AM) programs at rural community colleges in Northwest Florida. Guided by the overarching research question “To what extent do curriculum content, employer needs, and student experiences align within an advanced manufacturing educational pathway,” we will share: 1) our foundational work analyzing industry and governmental policy documents relating to definitions of, competency models for, and prior applied research in AM; 2) the model we created to inform, develop, and refine an advanced manufacturing body of knowledge; 3) the results of in-depth interviews and focus groups conducted with key stakeholders; 4) the text-mining approaches we used to assess the alignment between the Florida Department of Education Advanced Manufacturing (AM) Curriculum Framework, two-year AM curricula, new professional interviews, faculty interviews, and employer interviews; and 5) preliminary results of AM syllabi analyses and data integration. This collaborative research aligns the efforts of educators directly to the needs of employers and new professionals, and provides strategies for improving workforce readiness 2-year CTE programs, informing postsecondary educational policy, and boosting regional economic development. The project is centered in a representative highly diverse rural locale in which faculty, workforce policymakers, employers, and new professionals directly benefit from evidence-based methods to build regional capacity for the AM workforce through employment and economic development.

Mardis, M. A., & Jones, F. R. (2020, June), Assessing School-to-Career Pathways for Manufacturing in Rural Communities: Further Investigation of Advanced Manufacturing Programs in Northwest Florida Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34179

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