Advanced Manufacturing breakfast attendees
NIACC Stories

Advanced manufacturing careers in high demand

National Manufacturing Week is celebrated the first week of October in the United States.  Many companies, however, celebrate the profession for the entire month.  It is a chance for manufacturers to open their doors and let students see first-hand what happens within their walls. Some companies use the opportunity to showcase the potential career possibilities and foster interest in the field.

Why is advanced manufacturing important?

To stay relevant in today’s marketplace, it takes a competitive advantage.  Companies are constantly finding ways to produce goods and materials quicker and cheaper, making their bottom-line increase at a drastic pace.

Technology is the key proponent in advanced manufacturing.  As technologies have become more innovative, advanced manufacturing technology also improves.  This creates better products and streamlines the processes used to create them. And just think, new technologies are being developed every day.  People thinking outside the box, finding innovative ways to increase production and decrease costs. So where can we find all these potential employees to think outside the box?

Thankfully, NIACC has a solution to solve that problem!

On the morning of October 12th, NIACC students in the skilled trades programs were invited to attend the Advanced Manufacturing Breakfast.  They were able to enjoy the delicious morning meal while having round table discussions with area employers.  After 15-20 minutes at one table, the students rotated to another table so they could meet with each company representative and discuss potential career options in North Iowa.

The purpose of this event was to celebrate National Advanced Manufacturing Week.  It’s also a great opportunity to connect NIACC students with employers in the industry, giving them an idea of the kind of opportunities available and networking with area professionals in the field.

As North Iowa faces a slew of workforce challenges due to an aging population, events like this are instrumental for the emerging workforce in our area by putting them into fantastic career opportunities.

During the Advanced Manufacturing Breakfast, two students received job offers right there on the spot!

Many manufacturing jobs are listed under the ‘skilled trades’ category – a sector NIACC excels in.  Traditional manufacturing is thought of as taking raw materials and creating a product that adds value.  Advanced manufacturing, however, is the practice of using innovative technologies and methods to improve a company’s ability to be competitive in the manufacturing sector.

The purpose of advanced manufacturing is to streamline activity and create a more efficient operation.  It can be found in just about every industry, including electric vehicles, robotics, air structures, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, high volume goods, rapid prototyping and many more.

Manufacturing and product development is highly encouraged for people who like to work with their minds and hands. High-tech manufacturing continues to grow, especially in the areas of 3-D printing, and high-speed, computerized numerical control machining.

There are currently 373 advanced manufacturing jobs listed for Iowa on  According to, the career expert website, “Advanced manufacturing engineers can make $90,343 per year on average in the United States.

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Advanced manufacturing careers in high demand
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