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Advanced Manufacturing Council Meeting to Tackle STEM Education and the Future of Advanced Manufacturing

Advanced Manufacturing Council Meeting to Tackle STEM Education and the Future of Advanced Manufacturing

Advanced manufacturing is key to a diversified economy, yet companies are facing extreme challenges in finding talent needed to get the job done. Over the next decade it is estimated that nearly 3.5 million manufacturing jobs will need to be filled. The skills gap is expected to result in 2 million of those jobs going unfilled.

The challenge is evident in hiring roadblocks faced by several hiring manufacturers in the region, including SiVance, which seeks quality control lab technicians and safety engineers. In particular, the company’s ongoing search and struggle to identify employees with relevant skills and training speaks to the region’s need for advanced training in science, technology, engineering and math.

Through its Advanced Manufacturing Council, the Chamber leads efforts to facilitate business-community input into regional workforce education and improvement as well as the advancement of human capital.

Brian Soucek, Director of Human Resources at SiVance hopes that  efforts to strengthen STEM (science, technology, education and mathematics) education will help meet the growing demand in the area’s workforce.

“Finding people with a basic understanding of chemistry can be challenging in this area,” Soucek said. “Add basic technical or mechanical knowledge to logic, reasoning and problem-solving abilities and you have the attributes typically seen in successful employees.”

Employees with strong STEM skills usually excel in fields requiring strong analytical and logical proficiency, such as advanced manufacturing.

“Having these basic attributes coming into the job really makes it easy for new employees to learn the responsibilities and advance,” Soucek said.

The need for manufacturing workers has been a catalyst across the region for a deep discussion about whether more STEM training is needed to prepare our workforce to both meet the imminent demand for talent, and leverage it for career opportunities.

To hear more perspectives on STEM education and Advanced Manufacturing talent needs, join us at our Second Quarter Advanced Manufacturing Council general membership meeting on Thursday, May 21 at 5 p.m., where Susan E. Pareigis, President/CEO of Florida Council of 100, will talk about closing the workforce gap, and CareerSource Florida’s Quick Response Training Program Director Debbie McMullian will tell attendees how eligible, expanding companies can access $1,500-$1,800 per employee to train new hires.

To register:

For questions please contact Staci Bertrand,Director of Industry Development at or 352-334-7135.

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