Advanced Manufacturing and Automation Flexible Delivery
There is tremendous growth in advanced manufacturing in western Nevada, with production technician careers expected to grow in the region by 15% annually for the next five years. With large manufacturers such as Tesla and Panasonic Corporation moving into the Reno area, the need for manufacturing technicians has become a dominant issue for ensuring the success of this industry and for the economic development goals of the region. Truckee Meadows Community College (TMCC) has also identified access to online content as a major barrier for students whose work schedules or home location interfere with their participation in traditional, on-campus courses. are working or who live far from campus. To generate the workforce necessary for the continued prosperity of the region, TMCC will create easy to use, flexible courses that it hopes will appeal to incumbent workers, lower skilled workers, and workers with non-traditional schedules. This approach may enable students who are unable to attend traditional classes to enroll in the courses necessary to complete programs. In turn, these programs have the potential to provide these students with employability skills, access to a stackable degree program leading toward the completion of an Associate of Applied Science with Production Technician emphasis, and upward mobility.
The goals of the project are to: 1) provide an educated workforce using industry-validated curriculum to meet regional needs; 2) provide students easier access to course material online; and 3) use a scheduling application to reserve lab stations for student use. To achieve these goals, TMCC proposes to: 1) conduct DACUM analyses with industry employees; 2) provide students easier access to course content online using uniform course design and Quality Matters standards; and 3) research and install a lab scheduling application that will allow distant learners to reserve lab stations before commuting to campus. Additionally, TMCC students will have the opportunity to participate in the Tesla and Panasonic Registered Apprenticeship Programs. The project results will be disseminated at regional and national conferences. In addition, the flexible scheduling model is expected to be adaptable to other industries nationally supporting both traditional students and those incumbent workers seeking upskilling or re-skilling.