Workforce development

75% of funding is committed to workforce programs. UMDC various programs conducted courses/programs, reached 2,282 students, included 150 schools, provided 16 courses/workshops, and filled 418 jobs. 

Significant support for programs to introduce Women and Girls to manufacturing. These include:

  • Tech MomsHelp mothers gain the skills, knowledge, and community support to confidently take the next step in their advancement toward a career in tech. To date there have been 2 cohorts with 44 women. ​ Making professional connections is also a strong outcome from this program. One participant made a connection and was offered a job. One month after starting the position her leadership team offered her a $5 an hour raise. This was her response: “What is even happening in my life right now?! I have NEVER once gotten more than a $1 “cost of living” yearly pay bump. (And even some of those I had to ask, and ask, and ask for!) If feels so strange, but so wonderful to have my work seen and appreciate! I never would have found it without my connections here at Tech-Moms. I can’t ever say thank you enough for showing me how much more is available to me and my family in this field.”
  • Welding Camp – Introduces girls to welding. “Spark Your Career” offer san entry point for women into manufacturing technologies. To date 32 girls have attended welding camp. Video
  • Utah 4-H Engineering Everything ProgramTo date, more than 1,200 girls have participated in the Engineering Everything 4H Program​
  • Technical Teacher Training – provides hands-on training to faculty members addressing unconscious bias, micro-messaging and engaged learning techniques to increase the number of females in STEM classes. ​ Number of students influenced as a result of this training: 5214/year
    • Average percentage of underrepresented minorities in a class: 11%
    • Average percentage of females versus males in courses: 16%
    • Students surveyed at the beginning of training: 895
  • Women’s Mentoring and Networking – for adult women who are interested in exploring careers in advanced manufacturing, or for women currently working in technical careers who are interested in up-skilling or re-tooling
  • Career Awareness Course Development – College and Career Awareness (CCA) teachers with a comprehensive Project-Based Learning (PBL) plan focusing on manufacturing​
  • SheTech – This program is the largest industry-led STEM program to activate, engage and inspire high school girls into STEM degrees and successful careers with over 5,000 participants in the last 2 events and over 150 schools involved

In development:

STEM programs included two new courses for Kindergarten to 8th grade to introduce manufacturing through the home-schooling programs offered by UDMC member, My Tech High. More than 200 students are in beta testing for the courses.

America Makes partnered with the Granite School district to scale a number of national assets locally to impact the UDMC. America Makes invited Granite School District to participate as a pilot school for the new NOCTI (National Occupational Competency Testing Institute) Essentials of Additive Manufacturing (AM) credential for high school students created in partnership with America Makes funded through a grant provided by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

The STEM Action Center worked with the Department of Technology Services to create secure ways to loan out devices such as computers and 3D printers to schools and youth programs, ensuring all participants have access to the 3D printing curriculum created with America Makes regardless of current access to devices or an internet connection.

Additionally, in 2021, thanks to UDMC efforts, the state legislature funded the creation of a new joint program between Utah State University and Weber State University to develop an advanced degree in composites, the first in western United States. The program is expected to launch in September 2022.

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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