Workforce development

Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program Success Story: Career and Technical Education (CTE)
CTE Awareness Training
The DoD Office of Local Defense Community Collaboration (OLDCC) Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program (DMCSP) 2020 grant to Utah, known as the Utah Defense Manufacturing Community (UDMC), provided support for a new faculty program aimed to boost the involvement of both students and faculty members, while also improving the recruitment and retention of underrepresented students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, including Computer Science (STEM) programs.
The National Alliance for Partnership in Equity found that “teachers often give small, subtle, semi-conscious messages that cause non-traditional students to feel devalued, slighted, discouraged or excluded.” This leads to underrepresented and underserved populations dropping or not taking STEM classes. As a result, faculty are a critical element in recruiting and retaining women in STEM fields. The focus for this funding was geared toward Career and Technical Education (CTE) teachers and expanded to STEM teachers and counselors in Utah.
Utah Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Initiatives (UAMMI), partnered with Dr. Angela Trego, PE, PMP, FHEA, the individual behind the development and implementation of this program. Her background encompasses experience as a practicing engineer at prominent companies like The Boeing Company and ATK, as well as a faculty member at institutions like Seattle University and Utah Valley University. In her academic role, she has conducted research on engagement methodologies and principles related to inclusion and belonging.
The first training, delivered by Dr. Angela Trego, provides hands-on, multi-touchpoint training to faculty members addressing unconscious bias, micro-messaging, and engaged learning techniques to increase the number of underrepresented and underserved populations in their classes. 
Dr. Trego’s second training focuses on enhancing the enrollment of non-traditional participants, with a special emphasis on females in STEM courses and careers. The training involves educating high school counselors about unconscious bias and micro-messaging, specifically in the context of STEM fields. Additionally, the counselors are informed about the diverse array of STEM career opportunities available. The ultimate goal is to encourage more non-traditional students, particularly females, to pursue STEM education and careers. 
RESULTS: 50 CTE faculty at three school districts across Utah: Granite, Provo and Jordan, have been trained thus far impacting over 5000 students per semester. 
Measurable outcomes include faculty members witnessing a 30% surge in student participation within their classes and students reporting a nearly 50% reduction in nervousness about attending classes after the teachers have undergone and applied the classroom management strategies. 
The pilot course “Real realities of STEM” for school counselors was held at Davis School District. In attendance were 52 high school counselors. 
One participant said, “This training really opened up my mind to the influence I have as a school counselor regarding the paths students choose to take educationally and occupationally. I learned the positive power of encouragement for minorities. My perspective was broadened with STEM and its influence. The training was engaging and I had so many “ah ha” moments. It really got me thinking about my occupation and every day ways I problem solve with students.”

Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program Success Story:
Women in Defense Manufacturing Leadership Seminars 

The DoD Office of Local Defense Community Collaboration (OLDCC) Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program (DMCSP) 2020 grant to Utah, known as the Utah Defense Manufacturing Community (UDMC), provides support for a Women’s Leadership Seminar program to help women in defense manufacturing progress in their careers.

The program has hosted three Women’s Leadership Seminars, “Think Like A CEO” on May 20, 2022, plus two Women’s Leadership Seminar on January 31, 2023, and July 25, 2023. These events have reached 200+ career women in defense manufacturing.

“Think Like a CEO” provided career women in defense an opportunity to hear from successful women who climbed that ladder to CEO and network. UAMMI partnered with Catalyst Campus, Northrop Grumman, Silicon Slopes, and Women Tech Council to hold a mentoring session for career women interested in defense manufacturing and software development. 

The Women’s Leadership Events are explicitly designed for professionals in the aerospace, defense, manufacturing, and engineering fields. These events aim to foster collaboration, inspire growth and strengthen connections among women in defense manufacturing.

Throughout the events, attendees had the opportunity to hear from influential speakers who have excelled in their respective fields. These speakers shared their experiences, insights, and strategies for success, providing valuable guidance and inspiration to all participants.

In addition to the enlightening keynote sessions, the event featured collaborative breakout sessions. These sessions provided a platform for participants to engage in meaningful discussions, exchange ideas, and address common challenges faced in their industries. Attendees had the chance to learn from each another, enhance their problem-solving skills, and build a supportive network of like-minded professionals.

Networking plays a crucial role in personal and professional growth, and these events recognize its importance. Participants had dedicated networking time, allowing them to connect with peers, industry leaders, and potential mentors. These networking opportunities helped forge new relationships, expand professional networks, and open doors to future collaborations and career opportunities.

These Women’s Leadership Seminars included speakers from the local Community, Universities, and the United States Air Force.

Topics included:
“Elevating Your Career in Advanced Manufacturing”
“Advancing Women in STEM: Government Initiatives and Opportunities,”
“Empowering Women in STEM: Strategies for Advancing your Career”
“Building effective networks and embracing resilience”
“Breaking the Glass Ceiling: Empowering Women in Defense, Aerospace and Aviation”
“The Power of Mentorship: Developing the Next Generation of Women in Business”

Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program Success Story:

New Composites Master’s Program  

The DoD Office of Local Defense Community Collaboration (OLDCC) Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program (DMCSP) 2020 grant to Utah, known as the Utah Defense Manufacturing Community (UDMC), provided support for a new Master’s Program in Composites at Utah State University, with Weber State University. Aerospace & Defense companies, including Northrop Grumman, L3Harris, ACT Aerospace, Hexcel, Kihomac, Albany, and Boeing, identified a need for an advanced degree program in composites to support emerging DoD programs, including Sentinel. 

Thanks to multi-year efforts under the UDMC, the Master’s program received state funding in 2021. Utah State University developed the curriculum and hired Greg Anderson as an associate professor. The new program in Mechanical Engineering was launched in the fall semester 2022 and is the first graduate degree program in composites in the Intermountain West region and one of only a few nationwide. 

Greg Anderson, the program’s first instructor, retired from Northrop Grumman, where he had a long career in composites development and manufacturing and other advanced materials.

The new Master of Science (MS) in Composite Materials and Structures is part of the College of Engineering and was created to meet the growing need in the Aerospace & Defense industry for well-trained professionals who specialize in composite materials and structures. Course delivery can be customized to meet students’ needs with face-to-face and online options available. The program is designed for working professionals who want to expand career opportunities in the field of composite materials.

There were four students in the first cohort. While the program is designed for two years, two of the students accelerated the program and graduated in one year. The Master’s program now has eight students enrolled and will be adding a night class option. 


Defense Manufacturing Support Program Success Story:

Weber State Systems Engineering Master’s Program Capstone Presentation:

Overview of a Graduate Course in Defense Systems Engineering

“Our project helps students feel more informed about Defense protocols and procedures and enhances student’s preparedness for transitioning to a defense career and gain a competitive edge over their peers,” according to Ms. Elaine Cope.

The Defense Manufacturing Support Program 2020 grant to Utah, known as the Utah Defense Manufacturing Community (UDMC), funded the Weber State University (WSU) Systems Engineering Master’s program. The first senior capstone was by Ms. Elaine Cope, Systems Engineer for SAIC, Subcontractor for BAE Systems on the Integrated Support Contract for Sentinel, and Mr. Justin Knighton, Weber State University Manufacturing Engineering Technology Instructor.

The project developed a nine-week syllabus and content for a Defense Systems Engineering Course. The senior capstone project focused on weapons systems and utilized resources from the Defense Acquisition University (DAU), DoD Architecture Framework, Standards and Specifications, Data Strategy, Data Management Evolution, and the DoD Handbook. The project provided an understanding of DoD terms and acronyms related to current high-level defense systems, including F-35, B21, and the Sentinel program. Further, the project analyzed and evaluated these weapon systems from a Systems Engineering perspective, considering factors such as requirements, design, testing, sustainment and scaling.

Overview of a Graduate Course in Defense Systems Engineering

Defense Manufacturing Support Program Success Story:

Utah Aerospace Pathways Program Graduates 70 Students
The Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program (DMCSP) 2020 grant to Utah, known as the Utah Defense Manufacturing Community (UDMC), under Task 1.1 Workforce, restored funding for Utah Aerospace Pathways program after the State cut the budget due to COVID. In a ceremony at the State Capitol, 70 high school students were presented certificates of completion and all students received job offers from Utah’s aerospace and defense companies. At the graduation ceremony, Col. Peter Feng, Vice Commander, 75th Air Base Wing, Hill Air Force Base, provided an inspirational address to the graduates focusing on the importance of supporting the mission of the Department of Defense to protect the United States through innovation, which can be realized by this graduating class.

The Utah Aerospace Pathways program was created as a response to industry, and in alignment with growing Utah DoD installations emerging missions, which provides Utah students the opportunity to graduate high school with a certificate in aerospace manufacturing and begin an aerospace manufacturing career. This innovative program has brought industry, education, and government together in an unprecedented collaboration. Students take part in externships where they engage in hands-on training with industry experts helping to fill the talent pipeline in the defense industrial base. The program is managed by the Utah System of Higher Education.

The Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program launched in 2020 when the Department of Defense officially designated Utah as the first cohort of Defense Manufacturing Communities. Along with the designation came DoD program funds to enable integration and expansion of successful defense manufacturing support programs and introduction of new offerings to support and grow Utah’s defense manufacturing industry and strengthen the industrial base. The UDMC is led by the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Opportunity and managed by the Utah Advanced Materials & Manufacturing Initiative (UAMMI).

Overview of Utah Aerospace Pathways Program Graduates 70 Students


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