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Expo and Conference to include workforce development program.

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October 12, 2007 - WESTEC 2008 Advanced Productivity Exposition and Conference, to be held March 31-April 3, will include nearly 600 exhibitors representing technologies such as advanced machine tools; cutting tools and accessories; and manufacturing technology application and solutions. The Back to Basics program aims to establish the event as a resource for developing, sourcing, maintaining, and upgrading the talent base/labor pool needed to sustain U.S. manufacturing and remain globally competitive.

WESTEC 2008 Goes "Back-To-Basics"

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1 SME Dr., P.O. Box 930
Dearborn, MI, 48121

Press release date: October 4, 2007

DEARBORN, Mich., October 4, 2007 - The WESTEC 2008 Advanced Productivity Exposition and Conference, the largest annual North American machine tools and advanced manufacturing event will take place March 31-April 3 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Nearly 600 exhibitors are expected to participate representing a wide array of technologies including advanced machine tools, cutting tools and accessories, and manufacturing technology application and solutions.

Workforce development and filling the manufacturing pipeline which reflect the dilemma of an aging manufacturing workforce and lack of interest among youth to enter into a career in manufacturing will be a key focus of the event. Responding to the changing workforce needs of California's manufacturing base, "Back-to-Basics" is a program that WESTEC, in collaboration with the NTMA Training Centers of Southern California, is embarking on to establish the event as a premier resource for developing, sourcing, maintaining, and upgrading the talent base and labor pool needed to sustain US manufacturing and remain globally competitive.

"Back-to-Basics" offers several touch-points in creating pathways towards a career in manufacturing. It aims to attract and engage a diversified audience composed of women, new immigrants, displaced workers, non-college bound youth, and existing workforce searching for re-training opportunities. The program aims to bring more focus to the education and training needs of this existing and emerging workforce through demonstrations and workshops in basic machining processes with the integration of software applications and the use of more complex machines to manufacture parts. Alongside the workshops will be participation of various schools, community colleges, training centers and institutions in California offering courses and careers in manufacturing and engineering from which attendees will have the opportunity to explore a wide range of career pathways to manufacturing. The program will also include a career center for manufacturing companies and employers to conduct on-site interviews and job placements.

As a main attraction and integral part to this "Back-to-Basics" program, a "Gallery of Innovation & Technology" will be set up showcasing race cars, a model eco-friendly car owned by Jay Leno, West Coast Choppers and innovative and complex manufactured parts and products produced by job shops, manufacturing companies and exhibitors. These displays will be categorized by industry to further demonstrate the wide array of industries that manufacturing impacts.

For more information about the event, visit or call (800) 733-3976.

SME News Feed: To receive the latest up-to-the-minute SME news, subscribe to RSS at

About SME: The Society of Manufacturing Engineers is the world's leading professional society supporting manufacturing education. Through its member programs, publications, expositions and professional development resources, SME promotes an increased awareness of manufacturing engineering and helps keep manufacturing professionals up to date on leading trends and technologies. Headquartered in Michigan, SME influences more than half a million manufacturing practitioners and executives annually. The Society, which celebrates its 75th anniversary in 2007, has members in more than 70 countries and is supported by a network of hundreds of technical communities and chapters worldwide.

About NTMA Training Centers of Southern California: Since 1968, the NTMA Training Centers of Southern California (a not-for-profit organization) have prepared and furthered the skills of nearly 10,000 men and women for careers in the tooling, machining and manufacturing industries. NTMA is nationally accredited with locations in Norwalk and Ontario, California. Visit NTMA at

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