Bachelor of Applied Science in Microelectronic Manufacturing

Institution: 
Lorain County Community College
Comment Period: 
Fri, 12/08/2017 - 11:00am to Fri, 12/22/2017 - 11:00am

Comments

Comment: 
It is a wonderful honor to be a part of this degree. Not only will LCCC be one of the first colleges in Ohio to offer its own bachelor’s degree, but also in a unique field based on the demands of local microelectronics industry. The Bachelors of Applied Science in Microelectronic Manufacturing is all about listening to the workforce needs and tailoring this degree to bring qualified workforce to microelectronics companies, offering an affordable degree to students made valuable by industry feedback, and developing an exemplar degree of which other institutes will want to model their programs after. It's a very exciting and bright future for MEMS and Microelectronics! It would not be possible without the great teamwork and support of our Ohio's local microelectronics manufacturing and industry supporters and MEMS advisory committee, the faculty of LCCC, the hardworking reps at the state, and to all of the students who made this degree what it is today. Many thanks and cheers!

Comment: 
Awesome news! I'm looking forward to continuing on to receive my bachelors degree and furthering my education. I'm excited to see the program grow and reach great heights. Proud to be part of the first group to attend LC3's newest program which is a much needed one in this area creating good paying jobs. Thanks to the state for approving this and the other programs for the bachelors degree programs at community colleges across the state.

Comment: 
Great, Community College's have to expand into higher education degrees to make education affordable to everyone. LCCC has taken a giant leap forward in making this dream a reality for me and everyone who wishes to obtain a higher education. Education should be a right and not only accessible to the privileged few. The MEMS program under Johnny Vanderford will continue to become the best program not only in this state but the country.

Comment: 
Congratulations to Lorain County Community College and it's continued "MEMS" Future Community efforts. I have always Loved the Opportunity it has given me in Continuous Learning, Hands On Experience and Self Achievement. I look forward to the "MEMS" program under Johnny Vanderford and finishing my degree in Bachelors of Applied Science in Microelectronic Manufacturing. This will be a "Whole New World of Ventures" as I continue to change the World! Thank You!

Comment: 
The University of Akron (UA) does not support this proposal. The degree appears to be highly similar to and thus would have significant overlap with UA’s B.S. in Electronic Engineering Technology and B.S. in Automated Manufacturing Engineering Technology programs. The proposed program would be located approximately 50 miles from UA’s main campus, approximately 30 miles from UA’s Medina location, and approximately 19 miles from UA’s Lakewood location. LCCC is in the NEO Regional Compact along with UA as defined by the Chancellor, and adding redundancy seems to be counter-intuitive. Logically it would be more efficient and cost- effective to expand the scope of an existing program in the State rather than launching a new one. With only 16% of the Fall 2013 entering cohort (as defined by the Three-Year Success Measures January 2017 report on the ODHE website) earning a two-year degree at LCCC by the end of the third year, it is unclear how many students will be able to persist to complete a bachelor's degree.

Comment: 
You’re just mad because students can get a an education for a reasonable price. The only reason your complaining is because someone can get an education for around $15k in total rather than spend 3-4 times as much for the “same” degree from Akron. It’s a shame what higher education has come to. Maybe your institution should look at what Lorain County Community College is doing and try to emulate it instead of trying to destroy what is turning out to be a great program.

Comment: 
I can't agree with the logic of what the University of Akron is expressing in regards to the LCCC MEMS Bachelor's Degree. I was an uneducated newly single mother, after 20 years of marriage and at the age of 44 with 2 kids. I am in the MEMS Associates Degree program currently and the possibility of getting my MEMS Bachelor's Degree here at LCCC is my next step along with others I have spoken to. So, if it is not offered here at LCCC I bknow it would hinder furthering not just mine but others education in the field. I think the University of Akron is not looking at it in any type of positive way, sounds like a competition and that is just a shame and a negative attitude for that University to express to the public. The idea that it truly has nothing to do with opportunity for individuals but for profit gain as expressed by UA as "redundancy" is disheartening and destructive to say the least. The University of Akron should be supportive to furthering education for everyone not just at their campus, just my opinion!

Comment: 
I went to the university of Akron, and ended up dropping out. The fact that they are preventing a good program from being developed at a community college is hard to believe. I did not last at their school past my second year and now am in debt. If i had the opportunity to get a bachelors degree for 15000 dollars I would, and I would be in ruins as I am now. Bravo Lorain County Community College for seeing the hypocrisy in education and not going down that route.

Comment: 
The data cited by The University of Akron is taken from an ODHE report that was specifically produced in an attempt to provide a more accurate measure of success for two-year campuses as compared to the more traditional graduation measurements that have been focused exclusively on institutions whose business model is built around primarily serving full-time students.  The conclusion of the ODHE report was to say that the REAL three-year success rate of Lorain County Community College is 61%.  To cite only the 16% graduation rate from that report is either purposefully or inadvertently misleading.   While 94% of the freshman class at the University of Akron does enroll as full time students according to ODHE data, only 26% of Lorain County Community College students are able to attend full time for a wide variety of personal reasons.  We would be happy to provide numerous examples of students who took longer than three years to complete their degree because they were raising a family, working to support a family, or caring for a beloved family member.  Regardless of their journey, when these part-time students do eventually graduate, they are nothing but success stories. Their achievements should be celebrated.  We hope our colleagues at The University of Akron would agree.

Comment: 
I am really excited about this degree and the professionals that it will educate to support the large and growing electronic assembly industry in the State of Ohio and neighboring states!

Comment: 
I think this is great for north east Ohio and Lorain county! The mems program was just started a few years ago and has grown into the wonderful program it is today and will continue to be with the addition of the applied bachelors degree. We need more quality education at an affordable price. My husband and i went to a 4 year university, graduated 11 years ago and are still struggling to pay off our loans. I’m so very excited for professor johnny Vanderford and the entire school to embark on this endeavor.

Comment: 
Having this program available at Lorain County Community college is an amazing opportunity for students and provides access to quality care for those who previously didn’t have it. The quality of instruction is high and the need is great. Losing the program would be a big mistake!

Comment: 
As an employer, Hana strongly supports LCCC’s proposed Applied Bachelor’s Degree in Microelectronic Manufacturing because it meets a workforce need that isn’t currently being addressed by other higher education institutions in the region. While northeast Ohio has a number of very strong engineering programs the degree LCCC is proposing is unique and complements existing degree programs versus duplicating them. LCCC’s program specifically focuses on an emerging technology field of microelectronic manufacturing where students who emerge from the program have robust work-based learning experience, knowledge and experience of working in clean rooms, applied operator and design experience and industry recognized certifications that we value. The program is a necessity for northeast Ohio employers.

Comment: 
I’m commenting in support of the MEMS Bachelor’s degree program being offered at LCCC. LCCC is beneficial (and affordable!) for those seeking to continue their education in this field.

Comment: 
I’m commenting in support of the MEMS bachelor’s program being offered at LCCC. LCCC provides an affordable and beneficial opportunity for those seeking to continue their education in this field.

Comment: 
This program is a great idea for employers in the region. As president of an electronic manufacturing company I am acutely aware of the difficulty in finding qualified employees. Akron University offers fine programs. I am a past graduate of their executive education offerings which have been very useful to me in my career. However, their electronics programs do not graduate potential employees ready to "hit the ground running" as LCCC does. We have hired past grads from LCCC and work with their current students as interns. Geographically, Akron U is closer to our facility, but in terms of influence and capability they are farther away. I also strongly dispute the 16% number pertaining to success rate cited by the U of A (unverified) comment above. LCCC's bachelor program will be of great financial benefit to the area surrounding Lorain and great benefit to employers and students over a much greater area. This would fill a real need that other colleges and universities in Ohio, including Akron U, has not and will not meet. High tech companies and even other education institutions for across the country have recognized the contribution LCCC has made to industry and to their students. Denying this bachelors program to LCCC would be an excellent example of protectionism shooting down a great opportunity. Please do approve the LCCC bachelor's program. Sincerely, Jim Tennant

Comment: 
I like the mandatory six sigma training, and the hands-on skills development. It equips the new wave of workers to hit the ground running. This is critical for smaller enterprises, who often lack the bandwidth to carry out this training.

Comment: 
I like the mandatory six sigma training and hands on experience. It equips the students with skills to hit the ground running in a manufacturing facility. This is particularly important for small enterprises who don't always have the bandwidth to accomplish this training.

Comment: 
Whatever the politics involved may be, the program at LCCC should definitely be expanded to a bachelor degree offering. LCCC is already providing an excellent program with great facilities, excellent faculty, easily expandable, and supported by local corporations for job offerings. The program is producing and will produce highly qualified and dedicated individuals at a cost greatly reduced from what Akron State might be able to offer. This country needs scientists and should offer lower cost but higher quality programs to students any way it can.

Comment: 
As an employer, IEC Infrared Systems strongly supports LCCC’s proposed Applied Bachelor’s Degree in Microelectronic Manufacturing. The degree meets a workforce need that isn’t currently being addressed by other higher education institutions in the region. While northeast Ohio has a number of very strong engineering programs that we partner with routinely, the degree LCCC is proposing is unique. It complements the existing degree programs, rather than duplicates them. LCCC’s program specifically focuses on an emerging technology field of microelectronic manufacturing where students who emerge from the program have robust work-based learning experience, knowledge and experience of working in clean rooms, applied operator and design experience and industry recognized certifications that we value. This program is a necessity for northeast Ohio employers, including IEC Infrared Systems.

Comment: 
great news for all the pcb enthusiasts out there! I am so excited this is finally happening. A 4 years affordable degree right here in LCCC. This couldn't be any better, I've talked to their proffesors and they are all so excited about teaching mems related courses and you can tell this will be a major success just by checking the content of the degree. I mean, Altium! solidworks! even quality management, this degree has all of that and more, and it also offers experience as a part of the degree! which means it's needed to graduate. I'm definitely signing up for this and I know a lot of people that are interested too and were waiting for this to happen.

Comment: 
I am very excited to hear that LCCC has been approved for a bachelor degree in MEMS. This is so huge for the community and people in the surrounding communities! A bachelor degree for about $15,000 versus $60,000 plus at 4 year universities I can't think of something better than that! I have never seen a program offered like this at any other college and to be able to obtain a bachelor degree in such a high demand field for now and he foreseeable future is amazing! I currently have been working for a company in the area that does many of the things this degree offers and it is already helping to add some Hali to myself for in the work force! The staff involved with the MEMS program are amazing as well! Some of the teachers I have had at the college includ JR Johnny Vanderford have been my favorite teachers in my whole life! In the spring of 2018 I will complete my associates degree and I was going to be done with school after that because there wasn't any programs like this in the area and for the cost you can't beat it! I am 25 I'm genuinely excited to further my education with the bachelor degree starting Fall 2018 when the program rolls out. Being able to get a bachelors from a community college is very nice because of the flexible schedule as well I can schedule it around my work and still be able to go to every class! It's very convienent! All of the various job opportunities for people in the degree is nice being an internship based program! I can't wait to get more involved into some PCB manufacturing and some electrical engineering technology more in depth with the bachelor degree! Getting More in depth education with solid works and cad as well will be awesome! I really hope lccc can make this program happen not only for me but for all my fellow peers and classmates that are excited for it as well!

Comment: 
To have 600 hours of paid internship experience with the LCCC Bachelor's degree in Microelectronics Manufacturing is a fantastic requirement that will help with landing a job in this field after graduation!

Comment: 
Any time a student has an option to acquire a quality degree at an affordable price these days, that option should be protected, not fought against. I support the LCCC's right to have a Bachelor's Degree program in MEMS.

Comment: 
SMART Microsystems strongly supports LCCC’s proposed Applied Bachelor’s Degree in Microelectronic Manufacturing because it meets a workforce need that is not currently being addressed by other higher education institutions in the region. While northeast Ohio has a number of very strong engineering programs that we partner with routinely, the degree LCCC is proposing is unique and complements existing degree programs versus duplicating them. LCCC’s program specifically focuses on the technology field of microelectronic manufacturing which is emerging as a key platform for producing sensor-based products for IoT, automotive, wearable, and health products. The work-based learning component is a key feature of the program and it is very beneficial to us because we get to work with students during their educational experience. Students who complete the program have a robust experiential background in this technology area which includes knowledge of working in cleanrooms, applied operator experience, and industry-recognized certifications. These attributes are valuable to our organization in order for us stay competitive in an international technology market. Opportunities for developing and manufacturing microelectronic sensors are going to dramatically grow over the next five years. We believe that northeast Ohio employers can benefit from this trend and therefore the program is a necessity.

Comment: 
I support LCCC offering this degree. It is a great idea for such an affordable program to be able to continue offering such a useful field of study. The BS program will only strengthen the offerings available at LCCC.

Comment: 
Let LCCC expand their current program instead of having a school that currently does not offer something truly similar try to create such a program. LCCC is far more affordable than Akron which will create a much needed path for residents to pursue a lucrative career. Cost is a real barrier to higher education. Don't blow this.

Comment: 
Lorain County Community College has built something special and unique in this degree. Not only are they working with actually companies that will be doing the hiring, but they are pushing their students to explore and gain experience while working on their degree. With work based learning being a requirement in this career path, the student get valuable hands on experience that is not offered in many other programs or colleges locally. I have numerous friend who graduate with degrees only to find out that they are not exactly learning what is required in their field. This degree has eliminated that by having these companies input on what they are looking for and where the direction of the field is heading. For anyone to say that there is not a need for this is ridiculous. Speaking for the residents around here, it is a much needed program. The thought that it is possible to earn a bachelor's degree in a burgeoning field that has real experience associated with it for around $15,000 is an unimaginable opportunity. Not everyone is capable of spending tens of thousands of dollars a semester and having to pay residency to pursue a bachelors degree. Lorain County Community College is offering a degree that is not offered in this area. This is not just manufacturing or an electrical degree, this is a specialized applied degree that is not offered anywhere around here. Add to the fact that unlike other colleges and universities that students get clean room experience on day one and not in their senior years and you can see just what a jewel of a program this is. I have had lots of schooling and earned a couple degrees and this is the first time that I have seen a program that I actually enjoy and learn and get to work with local companies that NEED employs that specialize in just what is being proposed. The opportunities already afforded to the students is amazing, employers are actively seeking out the students in this program to hire them. This is an affordable degree that will pay for itself with the work based learning that is incorporated in it. If this program were not offered in this area I or my fellow students would not be able to pursue a bachelor's degree. It is very important for the state to approve this because access to affordable education should be what drives this department. Not worrying about competition with a sort of the same program from more expensive and further away colleges or universities.

Comment: 
Kudos to LCCC for going after a Bachelor's degree. It is a much need program in that area. For students to have the opportunity to enter a program with such good experience and a solid track record will definitely help those enrolled gain meaningful employment after receiving their degree.

Comment: 
I like what I see. Amazing for a college to offer an applied degree in a field that is expanding. I wish i had the opportunity for something like this. I would of been better off after college and not in debt looking for any job. I would of been in a job I like. Kudos to this college.

Comment: 
The MEMS program should be funded and expanded!

Comment: 
I worked for a few companies that do this type of work. While I am only in the office I have heard countless times the need for people with just these qualifications. We have a hard time finding individuals with this unique skill set. We have hired engineers (manufacturing, electrical) and they are not the best fit for working with small components and understanding the strict processing and environment needed to sustain high yields. I know we will be looking into this program for future employees. Good Job up there.

Comment: 
I support the approval of a Bachelor’s of Applied Science in Microelectronic Manufacturing degree program at LCCC. As a former LCCC student, I’ve had an excellent and rigorous experience earning my Associate’s degree in the MEMS field; I look forward to having the opportunity to earn a Bachelor’s degree, and to apply the knowledge and credentials which I earn to my work and career. The convenience of the class schedule, with plenty of evening classes, allowed me to continue to work full time throughout my semesters here at LCCC. I was able work fluently in my current job, a position in the microelectronics field, after only two semesters in the Associate’s program. This was facilitated by the hands-on opportunities I received in the classroom, which is a cleanroom, and the required work-study internships I completed with area businesses. Working full time seems like it would make taking classes to earn a degree a challenge, but I have been able to complete my Associate’s degree while taking additional classes towards a Bachelor’s degree. How could I miss the great opportunity to apply those credits to a Bachelor’s of Applied Science at a school close to home, in a field in which I already work with a job close to home? I look forward to continuing my education at Lorain County Community College.

Comment: 
This proposed program appears to duplicate accredited programs offered at Cleveland State, Univ of Akron, Bowling Green, Ohio Univ, Univ of Toledo, Wright State and Youngstown State, all of which together fulfill this small sector need in Ohio, with the highly specialized Ph.D. faculty, equipment and facilities that are needed to run such programs. IUC recommends that LCCC should instead look to engage in a collaborative approach, such as guaranteed transfer pathways.

Comment: 
I beg to differ with the writer from the University of Akron. There is some overlap between the two degree programs at the Univ. of Akron and the program a LCCC, just as there is overlap between the engineering programs with other universities in the state of Ohio. There are some distinct differences between the existing two programs at Akron U and the program proposed at Lorain County Community College. • In the Electrical Engineering Technology program at U of A, they do have many classes in circuits and programming, but do not have much to offer in the areas of drafting and quality. • U of A Eng. Technology program does not have any classes in printed circuit board manufacturing or clean room related MEMS classes that can teach microelectronic packaging. (I feel this is a serious omission on their part in that most of the technologies we currently use in our everyday lives such as cell phones, smart watches, sensors, medical devices, etc. utilize this technology). • U of A Manufacturing Engineering Technology does have many classes in programming and CNC, but does not offer much in the areas of drafting, quality, and electrical circuits. • U of A Manufacturing Engineering Technology program does not have any classes in printed circuit board manufacturing or clean room related MEMS classes that can teach microelectronic packaging. (See my earlier comment on this serious omission). • Another distinction is that the U of A doesn’t require their graduating students to have over 600 hours of paid internship to receive a degree. This is where the students “get their fingernails dirty” with very important “hands on experience” to practice what they are taught in a real world environment. • Last, but not least, is the education expense difference. At LCCC, the cost for a student to earn a 4 yr. degree, assuming the student is an Ohio resident, is approximately $17,000 vs. approximately $64,000 at the U of A. What a bargain, and the graduating student can jump right into a job and be of an immediate benefit to the company that hires them! Once students that have an interest in engineering/manufacturing learn of this education bargain, you can bet that there will be a high degree of interest in the program. As a Senior Staff Engineer at R.W. Beckett, I feel that job seekers that have this new degree will be of great benefit to our firm, many of the companies in Northeast Ohio as well as many out-of-state firms. The manufacturing technology knowledge that these graduates will bring to the workplace will help companies grow the technology they are able to put into their products. My career of 50+ years spans both the engineering and manufacturing areas. This new degree is breath of fresh air. I encourage the Board of Regents to support the LCCC Bachelor of Applied Science in Microelectronic Manufacturing degree program.

Comment: 
The proposed Bachelor of Applied Science in Microelectronic Manufacturing is designed to provide students with skills in the design, assembly, prototyping, and manufacturing of printed circuit boards. The program extends associate degrees in Applied Electronic Engineering Technology and Applied Manufacturing Engineering Technology. The identified CIP codes are consistent with those in Wright State’s recently approved Bachelor of Science in Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology program. Lacking a detailed curriculum for the proposed program, it is unclear the degree to which this may duplicate the Bachelor of Science in Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology program.

Comment: 
There seems to be a misunderstanding about some content of the proposed MEMS Bachelors curriculum at Lorain County Community College. In my opinion, the potential this program has on the future of technology by providing a worldwide industry with competent, enthusiastic, and creative individuals can not be measured as it is the model that industry should standardize to. I had the pleasure of participating in a technology conference a few months ago. While there, I met with students and faculty representing prestigious institutions from all over the world. After speaking with my new peers about LCCCs MEMS Associates degree curriculum, I was met almost unanimously with disbelief. One of the most shocking reasons for this, was how frequently and how early into the program students are given access to a cleanroom (not to mention the available equipment). I believe that LCCC has done its due diligence researching similar programs prior to their request to offer the Bachelors degree. I further believe (having done some research myself) that this degree will fill a void, industry didn’t realize it had.

Comment: 
I was so excited to hear our college Lorain County Community College could have Bachelor of Applied Science in Microelectronic Manufacturing , MEMS for short. only to find out it might not get passed because of possibly being to similar to another college's program. LCCC's program is like no other in Ohio. In our program at LCCC we go right in to our clean-room (lab) the first week of class. Our Professor Mr. Vanderford, works with companies in the Microelectronics field to keep up to date with what machinery they would want their future employees to have experience using, We not only have the technical knowledge to start our careers in this field, we have the know how to operate and handle a wide variety of machinery and parts, if it's being used in the field we learn to operate it in our clean-room (lab), which is a clear advantage. All students in the Associate program also have hands on experience in the field because of the required 300 of internship we must complete before graduation. Having the Associates Degree in MEMS grow into a Bachelors Degree in MEMS here at LCCC would mean people, like myself, would have an opportunity that might not be attainable other wise. Because LCCC is a community college our tuition in measurably lower, which puts a Bachelors Degree in MEMS within reach of many students, especially those also working to support a family. There are no negatives to having this Bachelors Degree in MEMS at LCCC, only positives. Isn't putting the opportunity for a higher education within reach of as many as possible the main objective anyway.....

Comment: 
Kent State University does not support the Lorain County Community College proposed Bachelor of Applied Science in Microelectronic Manufacturing. We believe this degree is very close to what we currently offer in our BS degree in Applied Engineering with a concentration in Mechatronics. We are in the process of being approved for two standalone BS degrees in this field for fall 2018—one in Mechatronics Engineering and one in Mechatronics Engineering Technology—both for which we will seek ABET accreditation.

Comment: 
The proposed Bachelors degree program should definitely be allowed to proceed. I am a graduate of the Associates Degree program in Microelectronics from LCCC and am looking forward to the Bachelors Degree program to further my education. The program at LCCC at the Associates level required a "work based learning" component (internship) which allows the student to apply what he or she is learning in the classroom. This Internship led to my Full Time employment in the industry upon graduation. I stayed with the Company that I had Interned with but had offers from 2 other Companies in the industry also. How many College graduates can say that? The Bachelors program at LCCC has components in it that other Institutions such as the University of Akron do not have in their programs. LCCC graduates will receive ISO 9001 Quality, Yellow Belt Six Sigma, SMTA Certifications just to name a few. These are all items that the Companies in the industry all are looking for and these help give the perspective employee a step up from the other candidates. The cost of the degree program is also another plus for LCCC. With the cost of higher level education skyrocketing and the number of people strapped with student loan debt, the LCC program looks even more inviting. The U of Akron is obviously worried. Their programs do not offer the Clean room MEMS related classes teaching the Microelectronic Packaging Processes. As a 58 year old college graduate, it was nice to graduate without the large debt that is required from the larger institutions. I feel that I graduated with a better or at least just as good of an education as I could have received from one of these other institutions. If these other colleges (U. of Akron) are so worried about LCCC being able to offer this Bachelors degree program, then maybe they need to look in the mirror and see what they need to do to improve their program! If they are worried that it closely resembles their program then so what, their program closely resembles other college programs. The LCCC Bachelors Program WILL be a good addition to the LCCC offerings. I am looking forward to continuing my education in THIS program. AFFORDABLE and QUALITY Education is what we need. The LCCC program worked for me. How many of you can say you had 3 job offers upon your College graduation?

Comment: 
I still remember my early days growing up in the city of Lorain. Someone growing up or visiting there today would hardly believe how it used to be. Lorain was a bustling, gritty, hard-working, blue-collar town. We made cars and trucks and vans. We made telecommunications equipment and uninterruptible power systems. We built destroyer escorts, survey ships, research ships, USCG cutters, and 1,000-foot freighters – many that still sail to this day. We built cranes of all sizes. We made steel, and with that, we made steel bar and coil and pipe. We had billowing smokestacks that colored everything on the south side red, and I watched particulates that looked like glitter sparkle and fall from the sky as I played in my front yard. If you were willing to work – and back then, everyone did – you could have a job and be part of the ever-growing middle class. It is said that every good paying manufacturing job supports four more in its related field and many more in various service industries. I remember the businesses that those facory jobs brought to the city: the department stores; the many smaller family-owned retail and clothing stores; the dime stores; the shoe stores; the bars and restaurants; the grocery stores, butcher shops, bakeries, and neighborhood food markets; the many ethnic social clubs and lodges; the hotels, office buildings, car dealers, auto repair shops, gas stations, movie theaters, hardware stores, drug stores, jewelers, florists, ice cream shops and stands, TV repair shops, barbors, hair salons, etc., etc…. Those days are gone. Lorain can scarcely afford to fill the holes that pockmark its neighborhood side streets. As we all know, most unskilled manufacturing is done overseas. Being unskilled here today almost certainly dooms one to a life of poverty, even if they are lucky enough to have a job. Or two. Or more. Don’t cancel this program. Please. All of Lorain County needs this. I know that there were people at LCCC who worked very hard canvassing local employers, asking them exactly what skills they wanted from a new employee. This degree in Microelectronic Manufacturing is the result of all that hard work. The more skilled workers we have here, the more likely it is that business will relocate, expand, or stay here. We in Lorain need this type of high-tech training, and we need it to be affordable. Without it, I have little hope that this area will ever regain its economic footing. Look at it this way: If it is government assistance paying for this education, this will allow four bachelor degree graduates compared to only one for the same amount of money spent at the University of Akron. If someone is paying for their education out of pocket, anything but this degree may simply be out of financial reach. Please don’t kill this program before it’s even born. Don’t kill hope for our future.

Comment: 
Lorain County Community College offers this post in response to the misinformed comments left by The University of Akron (UA) and the Inter-University Council (IUC) regarding LCCC’s Applied Bachelor’s Degree in Microelectronic Manufacturing. Specifically, the UA and the IUC indicate that they do not support the Lorain County Community College (LCCC) proposal to provide a Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS) in Microelectronic Manufacturing (MM) because our degree, as they claim, is “highly similar” to existing bachelor’s degrees in the state and specifically those offered by UA.  LCCC strongly disputes this claim.  Our program in MM has been designed to meet the unique and growing needs of our regional employers and to prepare students to hit the floor running upon graduation.  • LCCC’s employer-focused applied curriculum, one with a strong lab component and work-based learning, has produced overwhelming support from our regional employers.  Our proposal includes identifies 21 existing industry partners that provide paid internships to our MEMS students and have provided guidance on curriculum development of the MM BAS program and have all applauded the uniqueness of the program . Moreover, LCCC also partners with six regional, state, and national associations that have all endorsed our MM BAS program of its focus on a current and growing workforce need prompted by the explosion of the Internet of Things (IoT). • LCCC’s MM BAS program is unique and builds upon our strong Associate of Applied Science degree in Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS) degree, the only Associate’s Degree in MEMS Technology in the State of Ohio and one of only a dozen of its kind in the country.  Case Western Reserve University and UA offer complementary program but do not provide the same focus on applied processes associated with sensor design, testing, and packaging.  While LCCC and UA both belong to the Northeast Ohio Regional Compact, our MM BAS degree would not duplicate programs offered at UA or other area colleges and universities.  • While UA’s BS in Electronic Engineering Technology, like LCCC’s  BAS in MM, includes circuits courses and common general education requirements, UA’s program does not include MEMS classes working with printed circuit boards (PCBs) in a microelectronics cleanroom, quality classes, or drafting classes.  Moreover, UA’s program does not embed required work-based learning as LCCC’s MM program does.  • Our MM BAS program has even less overlap with Akron’s BS in Automated Manufacturing Engineering Technology.  Most of the overlap occurs in general education.  While UA’s program does include some quality and drafting coursework, there are no MEMS courses working with PCBs in a microelectronics cleanroom, or quality classes that lead to the ISO9001 and yellow belt six sigma certifications.  Finally, UA’s program does not require credit-based work-based learning.   • LCCC’s program has a strong lab component and a focus on hands-on learning.  This is due to LCCC’s unique facilities found nowhere else in Ohio, and certainly not at UA’s Medina and Lakewood sites. The State of Ohio, through the Ohio Third Frontier (2011), provided over $5.5 million in equipment to outfit the Desich SMART Center, which houses three clean-rooms and several testing and analysis labs. LCCC leveraged this State investment to secure a multi-million-dollar philanthropic contribution to support the development of the facility that houses this equipment. Furthermore, LCCC received a grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration to further outfit the facility.  LCCC’s MM BAS program will put these facilities to excellent use.  Nearly three quarters of LCCC’s students are part time students, who with their complex lives rely on the close proximity of LCCC and would be unable to attend an institution further away, much less one 54 miles away.  The University of Akron Lakewood and Medina locations do not offer the Engineering Technology programs referred to in the posted comment.    Finally, it’s important to point out the cost differences between a program offered within UA’s College of Applied Science and Technology and LCCC’s proposed MM program.  The cost of a degree at UA would be approximately $36,000 while the cost of LCCC’s MM BAS program would be $15,000.  This difference in cost represents a significant savings for our students as it provides access to an affordable bachelor’s degree program in their county, a degree that would be otherwise unavailable to many of them. Finally, UA and IUC have posted negatively on every public comment board regarding their opposition to community colleges providing targeted Applied Bachelor’s degrees for area students, which are also intended to meet the needs of local employers. With the goal for Ohio to raise educational attainment of all Ohioians ages 25-64 to 65% by the year 2025, we, as higher education institutions, owe it to our constituents to do all we can to bring accessible and affordable degree programs that match employer needs.  UA and IUC’s blanket opposition to allowing Ohio community colleges to offer Applied Bachelor’s degrees in select areas of industry need works against this goal.  Nearly half of all other states in the country have already granted such authority to community colleges.  Keeping Ohio from moving in this direction jeopardizes the economic competitiveness of Ohio to keep pace with other states.   

Comment: 
Much appreciated for all the support for LCCC's bachelor's degree in microelectronic manufacturing, many thanks to our industry supporters, the LCCC staff, and the students that have made the degree as successful as it is today. Very few other institutes will you find a degree that trains students in how to manufacture microelecronic products in a cleanroom as early as the first week of the first semester, in addition to the international recognized certificates in hands-on soldering, ISO9001 quality classes, and yellow belt six sigma. We're looking forward to leading the way at LCCC!

Comment: 
I still remember my early days growing up in the city of Lorain. Someone growing up or visiting there today would hardly believe how it used to be. Lorain was a bustling, gritty, hard-working, blue-collar town. We made cars and trucks and vans. We made telecommunications equipment and uninterruptible power systems. We built destroyer escorts, survey ships, research ships, USCG cutters, and 1,000-foot freighters – many that still sail to this day. We built cranes of all sizes. We made steel, and with that, we made steel bar and coil and pipe. We had billowing smokestacks that colored everything on the south side red, and I watched particulates that looked like glitter sparkle and fall from the sky as I played in my front yard. If you were willing to work – and back then, everyone did – you could have a job and be part of the ever-growing middle class. It is said that every good paying manufacturing job supports four more in its related field and many more various service industries. I remember the businesses that those facory jobs brought to the city: the department stores; the many smaller family-owned retail and clothing stores; the dime stores; the shoe stores; the bars and restaurants; the grocery stores, butcher shops, bakeries, and neighborhood food markets; the many ethnic social clubs and lodges; the hotels, office buildings, car dealers, auto repair shops, gas stations, movie theaters, hardware stores, drug stores, jewelers, florists, ice cream shops and stands, TV repair shops, barbors, hair salons, etc., etc…. Those days are gone. Lorain can scarcely afford to fill the holes that pockmark its neighborhood side streets. As we all know, most unskilled manufacturing is done overseas. Being unskilled here today almost certainly dooms one to a life of poverty, even if they are lucky enough to have a job. Or two. Or more. Don’t cancel this program. Please. All of Lorain County needs this. I know that there were people at LCCC who worked very hard canvassing local employers, asking them exactly what skills they wanted from a new employee. This degree in Microelectronic Manufacturing is the result of all that hard work. The more skilled workers we have here, the more likely it is that business will relocate, expand, or stay here. We in Lorain need this type of high-tech training, and we need it to be affordable. Without it, I have little hope that this area will ever regain its economic footing. Look at it this way: If it is government assistance paying for this education, this will allow four bachelor degree graduates compared to only one for the same amount of money spent at the University of Akron. If someone is paying for their education out of pocket, anything but this degree may simply be out of financial reach. Please don’t kill this program before it’s even born. Don’t kill hope for our future.

Comment: 
Much appreciated for all the support for LCCC's bachelor's degree in microelectronic manufacturing, many thanks to our industry supporters, the LCCC staff, and the students that have made the degree as successful as it is today. Very few other institutes will you find a degree that trains students in how to manufacture microelecronic products in a cleanroom as early as the first week of the first semester, in addition to the international recognized certificates in hands-on soldering, ISO9001 quality classes, and yellow belt six sigma. We're looking forward to listening to the industry's needs and tailoring our degree to meet those workforce needs and we're looking forward to bridging the workforce gap between industry and education at LCCC!

Comment: 
After years pf search I found a great path and excellent, with many opportunities and hands on training that make an interview a breeze. I found LCCC the best for this degree with the cost that can bring a community closer to a bloom. I must thank the recent stride this administration made so far. I want to see this grow and much as all my classmates want is to see this move forward. The opportunities are awaiting and I am happy to be a part of it.

Comment: 
I am writing to show my support for LCCC’s offering of a bachelor’s degree in Microelectronic Manufacturing because it provides an understanding of multiple segments within the PCB, PCBA, general SMT manufacturing processes and supporting tools. LCCC’s curriculum offers unique insight into Electronics Manufacturing, Quality, Engineering, and Drafting components that will make graduates invaluable to the industry upon graduation. Along with the affordable cost of the degree, the industry-tailored, hands on approach sets students up to contribute immediately to our industry. SMTA HQ and its local chapter have had the pleasure of working with LCCC’s dedicated faculty and meeting their capable, ambitious students. It is our belief that they deserve approval of the Ohio Department of Higher Education for their proposed Bachelor’s degree program. The electronics manufacturing industry needs more programs like this to build the pipeline of qualified workers and help close the skills gap!

Comment: 
YSU expresses its concern with the LCCC proposal to create a BAS in MM. Of critical importance, the proposal has substantial overlap with existing programs at YSU and elsewhere. While I will agree with the assertion that our programs in MET and EET are not directly aligned with MEMS, they certainly cover these topics. However, these programs are housed together and are continuing to integrate their activities, such that our students can now gain the required educational background in mechatronics or electromechanical systems. And they are ABET accredited, ensuring to prospective employers the quality of the education that our students receive. One can also argue that a more broadly based degree program that provides employment flexibility better serves our graduates, since it provides higher likelihood of finding employment in their field, more opportunity for advancement, and the ability to find alternate employment should their company go out of business or change locations. I further have issues with the qualifications of the faculty. Although the proposal indicates six faculty within the program, the appendix only provides vitae for three, one of whom is an industrial engineer and the other with an MEd (neither of which would fulfill the HLC requirement of a Master's in the field of study). YSU has a long history of partnering with LCCC and had been in conversation about offering our ET degrees on their campus (as we already do in several other areas). Given the limited resources available throughout the State, and the emphasis on joining together through regional compacts, it would seem that a more viable solution would be to develop an option around an existing degree. We would be happy to revisit the conversation about offering upper division classes either at LCCC or through distance capabilities, that could be a lower cost solution to achieving their objectives, while ensuring the ABET accreditation that their students deserve.

Comment: 
I'd like to note that a number of posts appeared on the applied bachelor's degree public comment site after the 11:00 a.m. Friday deadline, including one from YSU that was posted at 11:43. I don't know if that was the result of a delay in the processing but it seems a bit unfair. This is what Lorain County Community College would post in response were we able to do so. Lorain County Community College (LCCC) would like to respond to the Youngstown State University (YSU) claim that LCCC’s proposal has “substantial overlap” with existing programs at YSU and elsewhere. Like the University of Akron, YSU has responded negatively to nearly every proposal. YSU acknowledges that their programs “are not directly aligned with MEMS,” the central focus of our program. A closer comparison of our proposal and their degree reveals that while YSU’s EET program offers plenty of circuits classes and some drafting classes, there are no quality classes, hands-on soldering, 3d printing, or fabrication classes. Moreover, YSU’s program does not offer MEMS cleanroom classes, nor is it clear that there is any working with printed circuit boards. As for YSU’s MET degree, it offers many mechanical engineering classes, but nothing related to microelectronics. There are drafting classes, but no quality or programing courses, and no hands-on soldering, 3d printing, or fabrication classes. There are no MEMS cleanroom classes or mention of working with printed circuit boards (PCB) in any of their program courses. Finally, there is no work-based learning requirement in either program, which is a central feature of our program. YSU touts the advantages of a “broad based” curriculum, but what our program offers students are the skills that will make them ready to hit the floor running when they are hired. Our program is responsive to the needs of employers in our region, who have been seeking the sort of program our proposal offers. Our letters of support from our regional employers are an indication of that. As for the qualifications of our faculty, those delivering the program meet both the ODHE and HLC qualifications for the courses they teach. Sincerely, Jonathan Dryden Provost, Lorain County Community College

Comment: 
I strongly embrace the proposal put forward by Lorain County Community College which is a result of its true connection to the community it serves. This is also the best way to address employer’s needs. Specifically, the proposal by Lorain County Community College is the result of an institution being true to its mission, vision, and values. It is best to state the vision: To empower a Thriving community: Where all students achieve academic and career success; Where industry talent needs are met and businesses start, locate and grow; and Where people connect and prosper. This proposal is addressing a specific industry need with the curriculum developed in collaboration with business and industry, as it should be for an applied bachelor’s degree. Other degree programs (mention by others in this comment section) fall short of the needed robust hands-on approach, the importance of 3 d printing and fabrication, and state of the art training facility which allows seamless job entry. If an existing program met the needs, then Lorain County Community College would have partnered. I believe the differences in curriculum are significant to the needs stated by employers. Lorain County Community College established the first University Partnership in the state of Ohio in the mid-1990s and has been advancing strategic collaboration since the Northeast Ohio Public Higher Education Covenant was signed October 31, 1994. This document was signed by the Presidents of Cleveland State University, Cuyahoga Community College, Kent State University, Lakeland Community College, Lorain County Community College, The University Akron, and Youngstown State University. One (of many) essential area of this covenant that still rings true today is: Whereas, the changing workforce needs of Northeast Ohio include providing access to higher education for high school graduates and adults alike through cost effective delivery approaches for individuals, organizations and taxpayers across the region – this degree program is by far the most cost effective means of educating individuals for the workforce need. Please note Lorain County Community College partners with over a dozen institutions to offer associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees to meet stakeholders needs on our campuses. This includes traditional approaches and competency-based approaches – approaches Lorain County Community College also embraces and employs The concept of meeting industry needs through community colleges offering bachelor’s degree is not new either. In 2013, over 20 states had already provided authorization to allow community colleges to explore applied bachelor’s degrees to meet the needs of their citizens. The Higher Learning Commission has established procedure and protocols for submission, review and authorization for community colleges to award bachelor’s degrees. I applaud Ohio’s legislature for enacting law for this opportunity to present itself. Please note there is an international organization, The Community College Baccalaureate Association (CCBA), which strives to promote better access to the baccalaureate degree on community college campuses, and to serve as a resource for information on various models for accomplishing this purpose. The organization will hold its 18th annual conference in Washington D.C. this March, again illustrating this is not a new or novel concept. The baccalaureate degree continues to be seen as an important entry requirement for the better jobs and a better lifestyle. Therefore, every person should have an opportunity to pursue the baccalaureate degree at a place that is convenient, accessible and affordable. This is the essence of the proposal put forth by Lorain County Community College.