Edmonds College will receive $1.3 million as part of the fiscal year 2023 omnibus spending package, sponsored by U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen, to launch maritime and artificial intelligence (AI) robotics programs at its Advanced Manufacturing Skills Center (AMSC). The programs will provide an expedited pathway geared toward nontraditional students looking for well-paying careers in industries experiencing workforce deficiencies.
“I am very thankful to Congressman Rick Larsen for this investment in the future of the Advanced Manufacturing Skills Center at Edmonds College and our students,” said Edmonds College President Dr. Amit B. Singh. “This allows us to bring new programs in maritime and robotics in manufacturing to our community. These programs fulfill critical labor shortage needs through short-term training programs that lead to skilled jobs needed to build vital infrastructures for our future. We are excited and ready to get started.”
The money will help fund technology, tools, equipment, facility space, curriculum development, materials and supplies, staffing, industry outreach, and marketing and outreach efforts to launch both programs.
The Advanced Manufacturing Skills Center’s marine and AI robotic programs will operate as self-supporting programs. The programs will be subsidized by students’ tuition and fees that cover all class-related expenses. To prepare incumbent workers, the skills center will establish customized training contracts with employers and industry partners for their employees to gain additional skills at the AMSC.
U.S. domestic maritime shipping is responsible for $6 billion in economic activity in Washington state. Over 2,300 companies employ 69,500 employees and produce nearly $10 billion in economic activity across the Pacific Northwest, with a job growth rate between 3 to 6 percent annually.
Marine manufacturing offers a wide variety of careers throughout the industry. AMSC will work to develop its marine program in support of the Centers of Excellence for Domestic Maritime Workforce Training and Education (CoE) efforts to support the nation’s maritime workforce. Some programs that AMSC may offer include marine electrician, marine electronics installer, composites technician, CAD technician, marine welder, corrosion technician, and systems technician.
It is estimated that half of all workers in AI robotics will require up-skilling or re-skilling to adapt to new or changing job roles in the next five years. AMSC will continue to partner with employers in the industry to identify, develop, and deliver the skills their employees need to remain competitive. Some training pathways for technicians in AI may include maintenance, avionics electronics, robotics, automation, field electronics, electronic controls, manufacturing, and special electronic device repairs.
For more information on the maritime and AI robotic programs, visit amsc.edmonds.edu.