GRCA Commerce Quarterly Summer 2019 - 14

feature

Game-changing training
can ease skilled worker shortage
By Nic Thomas, Business & Community Development, Gage Personnel
and Ellen Albright, Greater Reading Chamber Alliance

Control
Systems

Mechatronics is a multidisciplinary branch of

engineering that focuses on the design, installation,
troubleshooting, and maintenance of electrical and
mechanical systems, which may also include a combination of robotics, electronics, information technology, telecommunications, and system controls.

If you're an industrial or manufacturing
company, you probably know about
mechatronics. But why is it so important,
and who should pay special attention?

I

t's no secret that Berks County, much like the rest of the nation,
has a shortage of skilled workers; particularly industries like
manufacturing, construction/trades, and healthcare. Odds are,
manufacturing or not, your company may be feeling the pain and
desperation caused by searching for skilled technicians to effectively
troubleshoot and repair some sort of electronic or mechanical system.
Identifying that need among our local employers encouraged Berks
Technical Institute to create a Mechatronics Program.

Local stats you may know,
but need to face head-on...
* 52% of manufacturing workers are age 45 or older - Berks
County will need 7,000 new entrants by 2026.
* Berks County boasts 525 manufacturing establishments,
which make up 17% of local employment in 2017.
* We are facing current (and future) skills shortages for
technical occupations, especially precision machining and
industrial maintenance/mechatronics technicians, welders
and quality systems professionals.
* Failure to address talent pipeline/skills shortages will
lead to reduced business investment and lower economic
output with significant negative impact on local economic
prosperity.
Berks County Workforce Development Board: Industry
Sector Priorities (2017-2021) - Published June 16, 2017.
14 COMMERCE QUARTERLY SUMMER 2019

Optional
Control
Systems
Computers

Control
Electronics

MECHATRONICS

Mechanical
CAD

Electronic
Systems

Electromechanics

Mechanical
Systems

We spoke with James Reece, director of education, and his
team at BTI to learn more about their new Mechatronics Program.
They are proud to be a community partner that can help train our
workforce for specific needs like this.
Q: Who should be aware of BTI's Mechatronics program?
A: Employers, specifically HR, training folks, supervisors, plant
managers, small business owners, high school counselors (including
those at CTCs), parents of students, and recruiting firms.
Q: What specifically should they know about the program?
A: The program is 14 months, currently running during the evening.
A day program could be made available with enough demand. It is
also possible to take any of the individual courses, or to bundle them
based on employer needs. It is hands-on, classroom-based learning,
utilizing a variety of electrical and mechanical trainers. This hands
on approach gives us the opportunity to set up real world scenarios
that will help our students learn the process of troubleshooting and
finding the root cause of malfunctioning systems.
Q: Can the program be customized and even brought on-site
to employers' facilities?
A: Yes, we can offer a customized approach that could be discussed
with an employer based on need and resources available.



GRCA Commerce Quarterly Summer 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of GRCA Commerce Quarterly Summer 2019

GRCA Commerce Quarterly Summer 2019 - 1
GRCA Commerce Quarterly Summer 2019 - 2
GRCA Commerce Quarterly Summer 2019 - 3
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https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Winter2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Fall2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Summer2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Spring2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Winter2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Fall2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Summer2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Spring2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Winter2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Fall2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Summer2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Spring2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GRCA_CommerceQuarterly_Winter2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly_Fall2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly_Summer2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly/GreaterReadingChamber_CommerceQuarterly_Spring2017
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