Bachelor of Applied Science in Smart Industrial Automated Systems Engineering Technology

Institution: 
Lorain County Community College
Approval Status: 
Preliminary Request
Comment Period: 
Tue, 07/13/2021 - 8:00am to Tue, 07/27/2021 - 8:00am

Comments

Comment: 
Manufacturing has entered the digital age and includes the initial product design created in computer aided design (CAD), the development of process parameters and material selection, process monitoring and control during fabrication, and inspection of the finished part with precision vision systems - digitally. The World Economic Forum, Future of Jobs Report 2018 predicted the loss of 75 million jobs by 2022, and the creation of 133 million “new” jobs by 2022. These new jobs are not the traditional blue collar or white-collar jobs of the past. These jobs are multidisciplinary in nature and will take advantage of human/machine synergies. These jobs require a workforce skilled in the high value tasks of reasoning and decision making. The majority of existing manufacturing facilities were designed/operated with the human working on redundant tasks, at the “data” level in the hierarchy. Future manufacturing facilities will utilize machines and algorithms to perform these redundant tasks at the “data” level and integrate the human into the system at an “information” hierarchical level. These jobs will leverage the distinctive human skills of creativity, integration, thinking and discernment by understanding the multidisciplinary nature of cyber-physical systems, interconnected networks of machines, cognitive computing, programming and man- machine operations. LCCC’s Bachelor of Applied Science in Smart Industrial Automated Systems Engineering Technology is exactly the right way to educate the digitally capable workforce for 21st Century manufacturing.

Comment: 
[NOTE: COMMENT HAS BEEN RETRACTED] We believe that the Bachelor of Applied Science in Smart Industrial Automated Systems Engineering Technology proposed by the Lorain County Community College fits the description of an applied bachelor's degree program. Based on our review we found the proposed program by LCCC very similar to the Bachelor of Science in Applied Science in Engineering Technology, which is offered at Miami University Regionals, can be completed remotely, and is intended to meet the workforce needs addressed by the proposed program. More specifically; the proposed program curriculum and goals have overlaps with various concentrations of the Miami University BS in Applied Science in Engineering Technology such as Electromechanical, Electrical and Computer and Robotics Concentrations. The proposed bachelor's degree program coursework mimics the required technical coursework in these programs of Miami University, and this causes inefficiencies due to the duplicated efforts by the two institutions. The following goals of the proposed program are listed in Page 2 of the proposal: 1. Implement and evaluate secure industrial networks 2. Demonstrate the ability to program advanced industrial automation systems 3. Design and integrated automated systems that apply to real world situations and challenges 4. Apply additive manufacturing, rapid tooling, and simulation (virtual / augmented reality) to industrial situations 5. Apply knowledge of advanced sensor technologies such as machine vision or Radio Frequency Identification to make automated system more autonomous 6. Integrate collaborative robots and human machine interfaces to make systems that are safer and more user friendly. These significantly overlap with the goals of our programs in Electromechanical and Robotics Engineering Technology concentrations in the Bachelor of Science in Applied Science in Engineering Technology. In addition, the proposal by LCCC states that the institution intends to seek accreditation for the proposed program by the appropriate commission in ABET (Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology). Assuming that the sought-after accreditation is through ABET's ETAC (Engineering Technology Accreditation Commission), the proposed program curriculum seems to fall short on mathematics courses as required by the ABET-ETAC criterion below: Mathematics: The program must develop the ability of students to apply mathematics to the solution of technical problems. A. Associate degree curricula will include the application of algebra and trigonometry at a level appropriate to the student outcomes and the discipline. B. Baccalaureate degree curricula will include the application of integral and differential calculus, or other mathematics above the level of algebra and trigonometry, appropriate to the student outcomes and the discipline. ABET-ETAC accredited baccalaureate degree in engineering technology programs typically include a year of high-level engineering math (Calculus 1 and 2) along with Statistics, Linear Algebra and Differential Equations in their core curricula. Limited coverage of high-level math, differential equations and science courses in the proposed program curriculum by LCCC is concerning as the courses may not be sufficient to meet the increasing needs of the workforce, as well as the criteria for ABET accreditation. Note that all but one of the concentrations offered by Miami’s Engineering Technology Department are fully accredited by ABET, having earned the maximum accreditation period of six years following the ABET visit in 2019 (the exception is the Robotics baccalaureate program, which is new and thus has not yet produced the graduates necessary to seek accreditation). In summary, the proposed new program by Lorain County Community College mimics a combination of our concentrations under the BS in Applied Science in Engineering Technology Degree program. From the state’s perspective, a more efficient solution to offer these students opportunities for baccalaureate degrees with engineering technology concentrations would consist of a +2 articulation program whereby students who complete associate degrees at LCCC would then transfer into Miami and become part of our thriving distance program in Engineering Technology. We believe that the LCCC faculty are excellent and produce students who would be successful in our programs; we ask that the state encourage this partnership rather than diluting resources by approving a program that is arguably duplicative. Miami University has been in discussions with LCCC about partnerships and we hope to work out collaborative approaches with LCCC to turn their and our efforts into an advantage for both institutions, students who wish to earn baccalaureate degrees in various disciplines, and the state of Ohio.

Comment: 
LCCC disagrees with the conclusion of Miami University that the proposed degree falls short of ABET requirements. The proposed Smart Automation program includes MTHM 168 Statistics, which is above the level of algebra and trigonometry and appropriate to the student learning outcomes embedded within the required Quality courses. We have confirmation from ETAC of ABET that statistics is an acceptable course for our MEMS BAS program. Our MEMS program advisory members indicated that they did not want calculus and differential equations because statistics is a better match for industry needs. There are other ABET accredited IET bachelor degrees that use statistics for the math requirement. LCCC recognizes that it will need to supply ABET with the supporting documentation showing that the industry advisory committee believes it is preferable for our students to have the statistics course than the integral and differential calculus because it prepares the students for the quality courses that industry wants included in the program. LCCC also firmly believes, based on review of programs and substantial and ongoing discussion with industry partners, that the proposed BAS degree is distinct from the existing Miami program in important ways: • First, it meets a significant need for hands-on learning, a need confirmed by industry advisors. The proposed degree provides substantial applied, in-person lab time to support learning outcomes related to interoperability, integration, machine tending and other specified course outcomes. Paired with an embedded Earn and Learn program model, the applied labs enhance the student’s ability to function in industry. • In addition, Miami University compares the proposed LCCC BAS degree to several of their programs within the Engineering Technology area. This suggests that a student would need to complete several of Miami University’s various concentrations to obtain the skills and knowledge designed in our BAS degree program. This would not be an efficient or practical way for students or industry partners who seek to upskill their workforce. Furthermore, the skills and competencies embedded in our program are true Industry 4.0 skills and competencies that LCCC spent the past two years validating with industry and key stakeholders (statewide and nationally) through partnerships with ARM (Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing) and the Ohio Manufacturer’s Association’s Automation and Robotics Task Force, which we facilitated. We invited Miami to be a part of those discussions and welcomed their input as a partner. • LCCC values its partnership with Miami University. We collaborate in several areas that benefit our students, including English and Small Business Management, programs that are well-suited for remote delivery. However, the skills and knowledge students will learn through our proposed BAS degree are best delivered through the hands-on, learn-and-earn model outlined in our proposal. While we have had discussions with Miami to create online pathways in Engineering, these draft pathways do not include hands-on components for students. An on-site program with hands-on instruction benefits our local students who wish to remain in Lorain County and is responsive to the needs of our highly engaged industry partners who have expressed the need for hands-on learning. • Finally, the affordability of LCCC’s proposed BAS, with its embedded earn and learn approach, will expand the availability of this program to new students and offers a powerful option for industry partners to upskill their workforce.

Comment: 
Automation has become an integral part of today's manufacturing environment. The traditional workforce in manufacturing is lacking the necessary skill sets needed to implement these automation solutions within their factories. New talent entering the manufacturing workforce MUST be versed in automation and best practices. Additionally they will need to have a strong background in cell integration and automation in general. This degree program has a sound foundation for an individual that is pursuing a career as an automation specialist.

Comment: 
When one is not familiar with an industry or subset there of, it is interesting to learn they often have a very technical component to it. We support the horticulture industry and it has become very technical over the last couple of decades. I think it is fair to say the acceleration of the technical side of it has increased as well. This technical side includes a wide range of industrial equipment that needs a well rounded, technically trained person to support this equipment from the design stage, application, installation, and ongoing service & support across the US and internationally. The local region has a need for this type of talent and expertise and LCCC has a great track record of educating those interested in a technical field. I think it would be a benefit for the college and local employers for this program to be approved and get underway as soon as possible.

Comment: 
The ARM Institute has the utmost confidence in Lorain County Community College’s ability to deliver quality, industry-relevant training, including the Bachelor of Applied Science in Smart Industrial Automated Systems Engineering Technology program. LCCC has positioned themselves as a regional and national leader that understands how national workforce trends in manufacturing, robotics, automation, and other Industry 4.0 technologies can be adapted to meet state-wide needs. LCCC has taken tools developed through ARM’s membership—like the Industry 4.0 Competency Framework, which models the core competencies for roles in robotics—identified the relevancy for Ohio manufactures, adapted those insights into LCCC’s training programs, and has shared best practices with other Ohio-based training providers to improve regional resources. The BAS in Smart Industrial ASE Tech prioritizes core competencies identified by industry and will help prepare the next generation of manufacturing workers to be leaders in the adoption and integration of Industry 4.0 solutions.

Comment: 
LCCC's BAAS in SMART Industrial ASE Tech is a best-in-practice program providing industry-based training for Northeast Ohio and beyond. The ARM Institute and LCCC have been partnering on workforce development projects since 2018 and LCCC followed the Industry 4.0 Competency Framework model they worked to develop along with ARM's member consortium. The BAAS in SMART Industrial ASE Tech sets LCCC apart as a best-in-practice workforce development program that will prove to assist their economic region in responding to the shortage of skilled workers and spurring manufacturing and economic growth.

Comment: 
On behalf of FANUC America, I am pleased to write this letter of support and recognition for the Lorain County Community College BAS in Smart Industrial ASE Tech. As the industry leader in Robotics and Advanced Automation, we fully support and endorse LCCC’s new BAS program that offers applied skill, knowledge, competencies, and hands-on learning of Connected Smart Manufacturing technology. Having students immersed in real integrated industrial equipment and technology aligned to current and relevant advanced automation technology is the solution. Application engineers need to have 10x more technical skills that address the understanding and critical thinking of Connected Smart Manufacturing™ systems. The Smart Industrial ASE Tech BAS degree will create individuals with automation, integration, and incorporate the digital-thread of industry 4.0, including industrial networking, AI, simulation, and data-analytics. This skill set is truly applied engineering proficiency and is paramount for preparing our workforce for current and emerging occupations in the world of advanced manufacturing and automation. Today’s engineering workforce in heavy focused on applied and interlaced technology and multi-disciplinary skills. This collaborative hands-on learning program offers a powerful options for employer and industry partners to upskill their workforce and will open new opportunities for students and job-seekers. FANUC America believes that a skilled workforce is the competitive differentiator in a global economy. The inability to compete is the biggest threat to jobs, not automation! We support all leading academic institutions and endorse the Lorain County Community College for this Bachelor of Applied Science in Smart Industrial Automated Systems Engineering Technology. The solution is a true industry-education alignment focused on technology, innovation, and certified skills that will attract and prepare digitally-capable students to meet the needs of exciting and rewarding careers in today’s advanced automation and manufacturing.

Comment: 
Kent State University does not support the proposed B.A.S. degree in Smart Industrial Automated Systems Engineering Technology from Lorain County Community College. The LCCC program overlaps with several Kent State baccalaureate programs that are designed to articulate well with technical associate degree programs, allowing for students to advance their careers through completion of a bachelor’s degree. Kent State offers the following degree programs that LCCC’s program will duplicate: 1. The B.S. degree in Engineering Technology — with concentrations in Mechanical Systems, Electrical and Electronics and Integrated Engineering Technology — is focused on the applied aspects of science and engineering and prepares graduates for practice in that portion of the technological spectrum closest to product improvement, manufacturing, construction and engineering operational functions. This ABET-accredited degree program is offered on Kent State’s Tuscarawas Campus, which has a lower tuition and fee level than the Kent Campus. 2. The B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology addresses the design, operation, installation, maintenance and analysis of industrial systems and machinery. This program prepares students to develop innovative solutions to problems encountered in manufacturing, automation and industrial systems using mechanical and computer-aided engineering 3. The B.S. degree in Mechatronics Engineering Technology revolves around the design, construction, and operation of automated systems, robots and intelligent products, which result from the integration of software and hardware. The program prepares students to manage and support the design, operation and analysis of mechanical and electrical devices connected with automated systems, robots and computer-integrated manufacturing. Kent State has long had a fruitful relationship with LCCC, with many 2+2 articulation agreements developed between the two institutions. We believe that continued collaboration on developing course-transfer articulations with LCCC is more efficient that creating new programs that will duplicate programming in the same region. Kent State would welcome transfer students and graduates from LCCC’s many associate degree programs in engineering and manufacturing into our bachelor’s degree programs. In addition to raising the issue of duplication in the region, Kent State engineering technology faculty voiced concern over some aspects of the proposed LCCC program: * The proposed major is called “Smart Industrial Automated Systems Engineering Technology.” However, faculty could not find any “smart” content or course in the curriculum. Faculty recommend this area to be more detailed, or the title of the program to be revised to remove “smart.” * The proposed degree is described as an application-oriented program focusing on applying and implementing technology on machines and systems. It is necessary for such a program to include education related to the basic safety principles of working with machinery. Faculty could find no safety course or content in the curriculum.

Comment: 
On behalf of Integrated Systems Technologies, we fully endorse and support Lorain County Community College's proposed Bachelor of Applied Science in Smart Industrial Automated Systems Engineering Technology. This proposed degree program is crucial to Ohio's ongoing workforce development efforts to ensure there is a pathway for academic students to continue their automation, robotics, and industry 4.0 studies in Northeast Ohio. While there are numerous schools across the State of Ohio, and around the nation, teaching automation, robotics and PLCs, Lorain County Community College's provides the opportunity and learning around connected and integrated systems. Today's manufacturing is smart & connected; LCCC will provide students and incumbent workers the ability to further their learnings beyond siloed technology, but rather fully integrated or connected systems. This teaching aligns directly with todays manufacturing/automation industry, as well as the future careers developing in automation. This BAS degree will provide a fully industrial hands on pathway to automation learning, backed by industry recognized credentials, with full support from FANUC America and Rockwell Automation. This unique BAS program will keep Ohio at the forefront of automation training in the US, and provide a much needed K to Gray pathway for students, incumbent, and dislocated workers. As industry adapts and adopts automation, education must keep up with the pace of industry, LCCC's potential BAS program does just that. Solving the automation workforce skills gap takes involvement amongst multiple players: equipment builders, credentialing providers, secondary education institutions, post-secondary institutions, state and local workforce boards, and ultimately manufacturers or employers. Lorain County Community College has involved all of these parties to ensure the degree is needed, as well as developed around the skills sets needed by the many manufacturers across Ohio, and specifically within Northeast Ohio.

Comment: 
On behalf of the Lorain County Manufacturing Sector Partnership, I write to support the creation of this BAS degree. Industry leaders tell us that smart manufacturing is here to stay. Manufacturers need employees with a variety of skills and new talent in the workforce must have insight into automation and robotics. We know that some of the fastest growing areas of opportunity include these topics, and that there is a dearth of talent in the pipeline to meet those needs. If we hope to grow business in Ohio, keep pace in a global market, and prepare emerging talent for those jobs, we must take prepare the workforce properly. The LCMSP affirms that this degree is in line with the needs of our member companies, will help them fill current and future positions, and will be to the manifest benefit of the region and the state of Ohio.

Comment: 
Through our Team NEO organization's leadership of the Smart Manufacturing Cluster of Northeast Ohio we have become acutely aware of the needed skills and capabilities to drive the emerging technologies manufacturers are seeking to integrate into business processes. The Smart Manufacturing Cluster is comprised of manufacturers, solution providers, academia, incubators and investors in the Northeast Ohio region and was the recipient of the International Economic Development Council's Gold Award for Innovation in 2019. Workforce development is a core component of the cluster commercialization roadmap. Through our cluster efforts and networks we have come to understand the immediate and future workforce development needs associated with Industry 4.0. LCCC has been contributing to the Cluster table of organizations since its inception and has been integral to helping to surface the workforce development needs of the manufacturing community. The LCCC proposed curriculum will provide a significant boost to the engineering, digital and automation talent so desperately needed in the region. Our region is the largest generator of GDP in the State of Ohio. The region is comprised of 7,700 manufacturers (95% of which are small medium sized manufacturers) who challenged daily to compete in an ever-expanding global marketplace. Today, the small and medium sized manufacturers who seek to transition to smart manufacturing technologies and processes are held back by the lack of talent and the resources necessary to train their incumbent workforce. LCCC has an impressive track record of tuning their curriculum to the current and future needs of the manufacturing industry. Manufacturers rely on LCCC to provide the classroom and hands-on training required to provide entry-level candidates that are job ready. LCCC's BAS Smart Industrial ASE Tech program is structured and focused to deliver the necessary talent.

Comment: 
On behalf of Integrated Systems Technologies, we fully endorse and support Lorain County Community College's proposed Bachelor of Applied Science in Smart Industrial Automated Systems Engineering Technology. This proposed degree program is crucial to Ohio's ongoing workforce development efforts to ensure there is a pathway for academic students to continue their automation, robotics, and industry 4.0 studies in Northeast Ohio. While there are numerous schools across the State of Ohio, and around the nation, teaching automation, robotics and PLCs, Lorain County Community College's provides the opportunity and learning around connected and integrated systems. Today's manufacturing is smart & connected; LCCC will provide students and incumbent workers the ability to further their learnings beyond siloed technology, but rather fully integrated or connected systems. This teaching aligns directly with todays manufacturing/automation industry, as well as the future careers developing in automation. This BAS degree will provide a fully industrial hands on pathway to automation learning, backed by industry recognized credentials, with full support from FANUC America and Rockwell Automation. This unique BAS program will keep Ohio at the forefront of automation training in the US, and provide a much needed K to Gray pathway for students, incumbent, and dislocated workers. As industry adapts and adopts automation, education must keep up with the pace of industry, LCCC's potential BAS program does just that. Solving the automation workforce skills gap takes involvement amongst multiple players: equipment builders, credentialing providers, secondary education institutions, post-secondary institutions, state and local workforce boards, and ultimately manufacturers or employers. Lorain County Community College has involved all of these parties to ensure the degree is needed, as well as developed around the skills sets needed by the many manufacturers across Ohio, and specifically within Northeast Ohio.

Comment: 
LCCC is a trusted partner of the Ohio Manufacturers' Association and the more than 1000 Ohio businesses that make up our membership. We strongly support the proposed BAS for its alignment with industry need and its vigorous engagement of both OEMs and small and medium manufacturers that make up their supply chain. As we noted in our initial letter of support, the proposed program meets the needs of manufacturers and will provide a path to high paying jobs for Ohioans. Our rapidly changing and increasingly high-tech industry requires a workforce with applied technical skills and an ability to adapt to rapidly changing technology. This program is designed to meet exactly that need. LCCC has established itself as a leader in Automation and Robotics education and training, and the SMART Manufacturing BAS is a much needed addition to an emerging career and education pathway.