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90 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I JULY 2020 Flex007 Article by Emily McGrath NEXTFLEX It is hard to come across an article, a lecture, or a webinar on closing the advanced man- ufacturing skills gap that does not mention work-based learning—apprenticeships, intern- ships, co-ops, and the list goes on. The prevalence of mentions of work-based learning but lack of actual programming speaks to the difficulty of establishing and replicating these types of platforms. However, there are some notable successes in the field. The Federation for Advanced Manufacturing Education (FAME) Program is a well-known national example, and some institutions have succeeded on a local scale, such as Lorain County Community College's TRAIN OH Pro- gram. But for the most part, the education and industry sectors have failed to crack the code on impactful and scalable collaboration. There are good reasons for this. Education and industry, while closely linked, are accus- tomed to operating sequentially but not in tan- dem: students are educated and then hired. This hands-off approach to talent creation has allowed the academic and industrial com- munities to develop fundamentally incompat- ible standard operating procedures. Now that work-based learning is enjoying a resurgence in popularity, schools and companies are try- ing to figure out how to work together. While collaboration is fundamental to success, the complexities of inter-organization cooperation paralyze many promising initiatives. In recognition of the vital role that multi- sector collaboration plays in technology and workforce development, the federal govern- ment launched Manufacturing USA in 2012. This program is comprised of 14 public-private Closing the Talent Gap: Work-Based Learning for Industry 4.0 and Beyond

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