Additive manufacturing also known as 3D printing is technology that builds three dimensional
objects by layering materials, including metal and plastics. According to Rob Gorham,
the Executive Director of America Makes, “additive manufacturing will change not only
how we make things, but what we make.” America Makes, based in Youngstown Ohio, is
the nation’s leading and collaborative partner in additive manufacturing (AM) and
3D printing (3DP) technology research, discovery, creation, and innovation.
A recent survey of 100 manufacturers, two-thirds were already using additive manufacturing
(Earls and Baya, 2016). Catalys, a market research firm, anticipates changes ahead
and predicts the global market for 3-D printers and services will grow from $2.5 billion
in 2013 to $16.2 billion in 2018, an increase of 45.7% (Catalys, 2014).
The growth and demand of labor with skills in additive manufacturing is mirrored in
our nation’s demand for advanced manufacturing technicians. More than 75 percent of
manufacturers surveyed reported a moderate to severe shortage of skilled workers,
and more than 80 percent reported a moderate to severe shortage in highly skilled
manufacturing resources (U.S. News and World Report, 2014). By 2026 3.5 million U.S.
jobs will be needed in advanced manufacturing and 2 million are expected to go unfilled.
Manufacturing is particularly important in Ohio where 16.9% of Ohio's economy is in
manufacturing. In central Ohio, employers in will need 802 additional technicians
(a 9.2% growth rate) earning wages averaging $36.51 per hour (2015 rates) (EMSI, 2016).The
Additive Manufacturing Summer Institute project seeks to address this gap. To decrease
the gap, the pipeline between K12 and postsecondary programs must be strengthened.