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NextFlex News – December 2022

Dear Members and Colleagues:

It’s been an extremely busy year, and I want to take this opportunity to thank you for your membership and for your support throughout 2022. We look forward to returning fully to in-person events in 2023, starting with a workshop entitled, “Applications of Hybrid Electronics for Advanced Packaging” on January 19-20. This workshop is being held in collaboration with SEMI, and you can find more information about it on our website here. The purpose of this workshop is to convene members, government partners, and the US FHE manufacturing ecosystem to discuss opportunities in emerging areas of advanced semiconductor packaging. As we await the release of the RFPs for programs within the CHIPS and Science Act, we seek to align our vision to the needs of the ecosystem and determine how we can shape future domestic packaging capabilities. We hope you will attend.

Earlier this year, Heidi Shyu, the Under Secretary of Defense sent out a memorandum to the Defense Manufacturing Community recognizing 10 years of DoD partnership with the Manufacturing Innovation Institutes (MIIs). The first institute to launch was America Makes in August of 2012, just over 10 years ago. Today there are nine DoD MIIs with over 1,580 members collectively. The DoD MIIs have leveraged $1.5B in Federal funding and $2.2B in private-sector cost share, executing more than 1,110 applied research projects and more than 480 education and workforce development projects. Click here for the full memorandum and learn more about how the MIIs are developing advanced manufacturing solutions for national and economic security.

Emily McGrath, Director of Education and Workforce Development at NextFlex, opens the Manufacturing USA Workforce Strategy Summit with a presentation about critical workforce challenges facing the US manufacturing sector.

On Friday, December 9, NextFlex hosted a Manufacturing Workforce Summit on behalf of the White House in partnership with the Departments of Labor and Education as well as the Manufacturing USA Institutes from around the country. Additional participants included the Departments of Defense, Commerce and Energy, and the National Science Foundation. The purpose of the meeting was to begin the process of framing a strategy to collectively address the looming workforce shortage and to collaborate on solutions that will grow the talent pipeline for careers in the advanced manufacturing sector.

Attendees at the Manufacturing USA Workforce Strategy Summit held at NextFlex on December 9 contributed to plans for a 10-year national strategic plan for workforce development. The Summit was held at the request of the White House with participation from the 16 Manufacturing Innovation Institutes around the country.

This Summit was convened as a follow up to the White House’s request for the Departments of Education and Labor to work closely with the Institutes and other agencies to develop a 10-year workforce development strategy for the nation. The event included a tour of the NextFlex Technology Hub, an overview of NextFlex’s education and workforce development strategy, and two panel discussions that featured educators, students, and industry representatives that were facilitated by Assistant Secretary of Labor Brent Parton and Assistant Secretary of Education Amy Loyd. The Summit was well-received by participants and represents the first of several meetings on the development of the national workforce strategy.

I wish you all a happy holiday season and wish you a prosperous 2023.


Malcolm J. Thompson, Ph.D.
Executive Director, NextFlex