This past summer I wrote a post titled, “Reindustrialization of America?” where I said that America had lost its ability to manufacture most things as efficiently as off-shore manufacturers.
I also pointed out that America’s education system no longer trained “manufacturing” engineers, or even encouraged young people to think about how to “build” things (other than their own portfolios).
Now, I recently watched an interview that Brian Williams of NBC did with Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, where Cook said they were trying to bring one of their product lines back to America to be assembled.
When Williams asked about the higher cost of manufacturing in the U.S., Cook said it wasn’t a matter of cost as much as it was the scarcity of people who knew how to manufacture things in America.
The men and women who made America the greatest industrialized nation in the world are all gone—and no one is being trained to take their place.
However—There Could Be A Solution!
Back in the days of “industrial” America, General Motors had a 5-year work-study degree program to develop their own engineering talent pool. After graduation over two-thirds of the graduates took full-time jobs with General Motors. This was one of the contributing factors to GM’s success at the time.
Ford Motor Company had a similar program for training tradesmen, i.e., machinists, die-makers, tooling experts, etc.
Many other programs supporting industrialized America were also active throughout the country.
All of that is gone now—along with the industrial might of the U.S.
So . . . . Here’s an Idea!
Why don’t the movers and shakers of today’s high-tech America start their own “Silicon University” to train not only the engineers who design products, but more specifically, the manufacturing engineers who actually create the factories, processes, and tools to build those products in the United States?
I wonder how many other companies in the U.S. would build some—or all—of their products in the U.S. if the capability was here today instead of offshore?
What does everyone think—could America once again become an industrial leader in the world if we just set our collective minds to it?