Manufacturing Day is an annual national celebration to help students discover what modern manufacturing is all about, and for years in Santa Clarita private and public organizations have come together to introduce students first-hand to how manufacturing, engineering, robotics, logistics, and quality control all play a role in shaping our world.
This year's Manufacturing Day in the SCV was certainly an iconic one. It was a day filled with excitement as the College of the Canyons unveiled its brand new Advanced Technology Center (ATC) on Thursday, October 5th. The grand opening was followed by a bustling gathering the next day, where hundreds of students and community members eagerly explored the possibilities of advanced manufacturing technologies and potential career paths.
Grand Opening of the ATC
As technology reshapes industries, College of the Canyons is committed to retooling education to ensure today’s students excel in tomorrow’s jobs. Equipped with cutting-edge technology, the 13,500-square-foot interim Advanced Technology Center ATC is purpose-built to provide hands-on training and ensure students are equipped for the world of Industry 4.0, which is marked by big data, robotics, system integration, augmented reality, cybersecurity, and the Internet of Things (IoT).
Labor market projections show Los Angeles County will add more than 500,000 jobs in advanced technology fields within the next four years, with the U.S. expecting to need 4 million modern manufacturing jobs to be filled between now and 2030. The ATC will help to fill the skills gap and inspire the future workforce, providing the training students need to access both entry-level and mid-career positions in high-wage, high-demand jobs. Their list of current courses includes:
- Milling and Tooling
- Manufacturing Essentials
- CNC Manufacturing
- Low-Observable Pathway
- Machine Tending and Robotics (In Development - 2024)
- Certified Production Technician (In Development - 2024)
- Certified Logistic Technician (In Development - 2024)
To ensure the ATC delivers as promised, College of the Canyons established a Business & Industry Leadership Team (BILT) comprised of representatives from local businesses who utilize similar technologies in their production processes. Many of them have decades of experience in their fields, and their expertise guided everything from equipment selection, to shop layout, and curriculum development, ensuring the training offered in ATC meets the rigorous demands of industry. Along with industry partners the ATC also received $3 million in state and federal funding thanks to then-Assemblywoman Christy Smith in 2019, and Congressman Mike Garcia in 2022 (with the support of Senator Alex Padilla).
"I am thrilled to see all the public, private, and educational organizations coming together to make the new Advanced Technology Center a reality!" said SCVEDC President and CEO Dr. Jey Wagner. "There are so many exciting things to come from this collaborative effort. The SCVEDC is proud to have played a part in supporting the workforce development and career training pathways here in the Santa Clarita Valley."
Work is already underway to build a larger permanent facility that will significantly expand the capabilities of the ATC. In May, College of the Canyons contracted with Intertex Companies for the purchase of a “build-to-suit” facility situated on nearly four acres of land on Valley Center Drive, near Soledad Canyon Road. Intertex is expected to begin construction in spring 2024 on a 30,000-square-foot facility that will more than double the size of the current interim ATC.
Manufacturing Day at the ATC
This year's Manufacturing Day event included several industry experts from local and regional companies to highlight the many opportunities careers in this field provide, including:
- Aircraft Component Repair (ACR)
- B&B Manufacturing
- Black Magic Design
- Contractors Wardrobe
- ITT Aerospace
- Lockheed Martin
- Northrop Grumman
- Universal Studios
- TA Aerospace
- Shadow Box Studios
- Levil Technology
- Klein Education
- FMI Aerostructures
MFG Day, organized nationally by the Manufacturing Institute, is manufacturing’s biggest annual opportunity to inspire the next generation, positively shift perceptions about the industry, and build the foundation for the manufacturing workforce of the future. It empowers manufacturers to come together to address their collective challenges so they can help their communities and future generations thrive.
Attendees of this year's MFG Day in SCV were given insights into:
- Rapidly growing career opportunities in manufacturing fields
- How new products spring to life from an initial idea
- The surprising skill sets that businesses are looking for in employees
- Common myths and misconceptions about manufacturing
For more information about the Advanced Technology Center or questions about how to upskill your workforce with subsidized, tailored training initiatives, reach out to:
Director of Business Partnerships and Workforce Engagement
College of the Canyons (Justin.Wallace@canyons.edu)