Maintenance Technology August 2015 - (Page 6)

UPTIME Boost STEM, Develop Skilled Workers Bob Williamson Contributing Editor 6| T Many Millennial students, who did not pursue a he resurgence of Science, Technology, Engicollege degree, left high school with a diploma, but neering, and Math (STEM) courses of study few marketable skills. Many of the non-college-prep in the national education community is not classes that prepared their parents and grandparnew. STEM education dates to the 1950s, ents for entry into life-long careers in various trades but gained national attention with the 1983 report had long since been removed from the curriculum. from President Reagan's National Commission on These include the "shop" classes of the 1960s and Excellence in Education, "A Nation at Risk." But I'm 1970s. The table saws, arc welders, cutting torches, convinced that the renewed enthusiasm for STEM and other equipment once found in these classis due to the gaps in education, training, and career rooms have gone the way of certain playground preparation our schools and local/state governrides, all in the interest of safety and insurance-cost ments have allowed for the past two generations. As reduction. Moves such as this suggest that compea result, "Go to college and get a degree!" became tent supervision, safety-hazard consciousness, and a the plan for everyone. professional standard of leadership have also moved Career awareness and education for global along. As we know, these traits are requirements in competitiveness for the college-bound students and business and industry. those who would benefit from a community-college Not surprisingly, the U.S. Department of technical education, have been largely ignored. This Education deleted has hurt our industry, "Technology Education/ our infrastructure, Industrial Arts" from its and our economy. official Classification of (See The Forgotten Instructional Programs Half, by Samuel (CIP) in 2010. Not a big Halperin, 1988.) deal? The CIP is foundaSTEM courses tional to the Integrated of study, starting at Postsecondary Education elementary levels and Data System (IPEDS), the continuing through An applied-STEM learning approach would fuel primary source for data on post-secondary the curiosity that enables a student's real-world colleges, universities, and educational levels, troubleshooting/problem-solving ability and be technical and vocational need a boost-a boost of tremendous benefit to business and industry. post-secondary instituthat would open tions in the U.S. doors to increasing opportunities for large numbers of students who would otherwise fall Good jobs go begging through the cracks. Specifically, this boost would Today, business and industry are experiencing a align the STEM content with business and industry growing skills deficit among job hunters and new careers and emphasize applied learning. hires. While members of this group may be college educated, they often lack practical hands-on job skills. These skills (and knowledge) are rapidly More workers, more skills gaps walking out the door with the aging Baby Boomers. The Millennial generation, which involves more This is especially true among retiring mechanic, than 80 million people born between 1982 and repair, and engineering technicians. 2000, has exceeded the Baby Boomer generation of The increasingly sophisticated equipment, 76 million in the U.S. In 2015, this 15- to 33-yearmachinery, and facilities found in most of our old labor group now represents the largest generaexisting businesses and industries require people tion in the U.S. workforce, according to the Bureau who are excited about working with their hands of Labor Statistics. MAINTENANCE TECHNOLOGY AUGUST 2015

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Maintenance Technology August 2015

My Take
For On The Floor
Industry News
Ultrasound: Aural Intelligence
Excellence in Action
Cool Advice on Hot Motors
Step Up to Greater Electrical Awareness
Keep Hydraulic Fluids Contamination Free
Five Steps to Workplace Desirability
Put a Good Base Under Your Pumps
QR-Code POI System for Quick Problem Solving
Contrarian View
Ad Index

Maintenance Technology August 2015