Manufacturing Association and SME Form Workforce-Focused Partnership

The two organizations have collaborated on advancing manufacturing. This partnership focuses on leveraging the strengths of each organization.

The two organizations have collaborated on advancing manufacturing. This partnership focuses on leveraging the strengths of each organization.

AMT – The Association For Manufacturing Technology and SME announces a strategic partnership to work toward solving North America’s manufacturing workforce challenges. The two organizations have been longtime collaborators on advancing manufacturing, and this partnership focuses on leveraging the strengths and resources of each organization for the betterment and advancement of the industry through three key areas: workforce development, educational products and services and student events.           

A key cornerstone of this partnership included welcoming Greg Jones, former AMT vice president, Smartforce Development, to the workforce development team of SME as director, strategic programs and partnerships, where he will report to Jeannine Kunz, chief workforce development officer at SME. 

“Workforce development continues to be one of the most important factors affecting our members and the manufacturing community, so it makes sense to combine our forces in this area to scale solutions,” says Douglas K. Woods, president and chief executive officer at AMT. 

AMT’s education products and services will now be owned and operated by SME, which will leverage the existing strength and industry leadership of Tooling U-SME, the organization’s workforce development area. The AMT programs migrating to SME include the Certified Manufacturing Technology Sales Engineer (CMTSE) program, the MT Sales Fundamentals program, and additional AMT e-learning products in the area of transformational technologies. They will remain available to AMT members and to the manufacturing community more broadly through Tooling U-SME.

Both organizations recognized the opportunity to incorporate AMT’s education products and services into the learning and development solutions of Tooling U-SME, which include its learning management system. 

“This is a key indicator of our belief that unprecedented collaboration is required at this time to fully address the current and near-term education and workforce development challenges facing manufacturers in North America,” Kunz says. “There are a tremendous number of valuable programs happening across the United States, and the more we can amplify, align, and strengthen one another, the more impactful we can be for individuals, educators, employers and communities.” 

AMT is known for its IMTS—The International Manufacturing Technology Show, held every other year in Chicago and where the Smartforce Student Summit convenes. The Smartforce Student Summit showcases the manufacturing technology classroom of the future to educators and students through a hands-on experience. Serving over 100,000 students and educators, the Student Summit is designed to inspire students to seek an education pathway in STEM and lead them to a career in manufacturing.    

The Student Summit aligns to SME’s mission, and along those lines, SME and AMT have moved to co-produce the Student Summit at IMTS 2024 as a pillar of its announcement to partner in workforce development. 

“Expanding our existing partnership with AMT on producing the MT Series and Smart Manufacturing Experience events to include collaborating onworkforce development is exactly what nonprofits should continuously aim to do when it benefits the industry,” says Bob Willig, executive director and chief executive officer at SME. “We are particularly excited to work with AMT on coproducing the Smartforce Student Summit at IMTS 2024 centered around our shared vision for the ‘manufacturing technology classroom of the future.’” 

About AMT 

Establish in 1902, AMT—The Association For Manufacturing Technology represents U.S.-based providers of manufacturing technology—advanced machinery, devices, and digital equipment. Located in McLean, VA, AMT acts as an industry voice to speed innovation and develop manufacturing’s advanced workforce. With expertise in industry data and intelligence, as well as a complement of international business operations, AMT also produces IMTS—The International Manufacturing Technology Show. 

Sources: Press materials received from the company and additional information gleaned from the company’s website.

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