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Prime Partnership For Regional Innovation In Manufacturing Education

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2001 Annual Conference


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication Date

June 24, 2001

Start Date

June 24, 2001

End Date

June 27, 2001



Page Count


Page Numbers

6.804.1 - 6.804.8



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Paper Authors

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Sunday Faseyitan

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Robert Myers

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Pearley Cunningham

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David Huggins

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Winston F. Erevelles

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1463

PRIME – the Partnership for Regional Innovation in Manufacturing Education Winston F. Erevelles – Robert Morris College David Huggins – Penn State New Kensington Pearley Cunningham – Community College of Allegheny County Sunday Faseyitan - Butler County Community College Robert Myers – Westmoreland County Community College

I. Introduction

The manufacturing base of Southwestern Pennsylvania is the key to a healthy regional economy. Manufacturing is the second largest private sector employer with 166,000 jobs, and first in annual wages with a total payroll of over $6 billion1, 2. The average manufacturing wage of $40,000 compares very favorably to the $28,000 average of other sectors. Figures 1 and 2 further underline the importance of manufacturing to southwestern Pennsylvania – by showing the impact that the relatively small number of manufacturing jobs has on the regional economy.

6% 10 % 16 % Public Public Local Sector Exported Sector Manufacturing Jobs Services Services 40 % 15 % 11 % Services 26 % Exported Retail, $139 Billion Economy 7% Wholesale, Services Jobs Construction $56B Manufacturing 29 % Retail, Wholesale, $15B Exported Services Construction 40 % 1M illion Total SWPA Jobs Manufacturing

Figure 1. Breakdown of Regional Jobs Figure 2. Impact of Manufacturing

This essential regional economic base is being threatened by a critical shortage of skilled technicians and engineers needed to sustain and grow the region's manufacturers3. This is further complicated by the fact that the industry base in Southwestern Pennsylvania is no longer dominated by the steel industry. Manufacturers in the region now exhibit significant diversity in materials, processes, and technology thereby challenging the educational system that needs to be in place to prepare the regional workforce.

At a time when manufacturers cannot recruit a sufficient number of skilled workers, there is a segment of the region's workforce that is under-employed and often working in the service and retail sectors for much lower wages. The projected retirement attrition rate of 5% per year in the manufacturing sector further exacerbates this situation. This disconnect in the deployment of the regional workforce is the impetus for five Southwestern Pennsylvania participating educational institutions to recruit and educate the kind of workforce demanded by the region's manufacturers while simultaneously providing new and rewarding career paths for the region’s youth. Clearly

Proceedings of the 2001 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2001, American Society for Engineering Education

Faseyitan, S., & Myers, R., & Cunningham, P., & Huggins, D., & Erevelles, W. F. (2001, June), Prime Partnership For Regional Innovation In Manufacturing Education Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico. 10.18260/1-2--9673

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