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Diversity is Manufacturing's Future!

The Manufacturing Diversity Institute (MDI) is the primary engine driving the creation of the nation’s first manufacturing diversity cluster. Strategically situated in the “machine shop of the world” (Milwaukee) and the state (Wisconsin) with the highest concentration of manufacturing employment in the USA, MDI is responsible for connecting under-served talent, ingenuity, and innovation to manufacturing opportunities.

The Challenge

Manufacturers can no longer afford to wait. It is time to educate and train the next generation of manufacturing talent. Access to a highly skilled and educated workforce is the most critical element for innovation success. Increasingly, companies report they cannot find individuals with the skills required for today’s advanced manufacturing workplaces.

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Manufacturing has the potential to stage a renaissance and once again become a career of choice for the most talented. Exploding demand in developing economies and a wave of innovation in materials, manufacturing processes, and information technology are driving today’s new possibilities for “advanced” manufacturing. Nanotechnologies that make possible new types of microelectronics and medical treatments, 3D printing, and emerging new materials and methods will revolutionize how products are designed and made.

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Education and training are, of course, the keys to closing the manufacturing talent gap and fostering entrepreneurship. While there are several examples of innovation in manufacturing technology education by single institutions, they are still too small and fragmented to meet the demand levels of employers. There are also isolated examples of small networks of educational institutions, and of progressive employers. All of these need to be undertaken on a larger scale.

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