* John Sullivan, director of Purdue's Center for Advanced Manufacturing, says to be successful, workers must have the ability to withstand constant changes in the industry. (20 seconds)
* The president of the National Manufacturers Association and former Michigan governor John Engler says the manufacturing economy in the United States is strong but more needs to be done to develop a pool of well-trained workers. (25.9 seconds)
* Lt. Gov. Becky Skillman says Indiana has some of the best resources to offer new and expanding companies. (10 seconds)

* Center for Advanced Manufacturing
* Advanced Manufacturing Summit

April 12, 2007

Indiana lieutenant governor, former Michigan governor, to speak at manufacturing summit

Kevin Schoeffel controls a laser-cladding system
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Indiana Lt. Gov. Becky Skillman and John Engler, ex-governor of Michigan and president and chief executive officer of the National Association of Manufacturing, will be featured speakers at Purdue University's sixth annual advanced manufacturing summit.

Advancing Manufacturing VI: Manufacturing Competitiveness: Firm, Industry and Regional Imperatives for Success, will take place May 10 on campus and will examine improving a firm's supply chain competitiveness. The conference is expected to attract 400 attendees.

"In order to stay competitive, the manufacturing industry in Indiana is going to depend on the education of the work force," said John Sullivan, director of Purdue's Center for Advanced Manufacturing. "To that end, we will discuss in this conference how Purdue is equipped to help with a comprehensive group of manufacturing resources, including the Center for Advanced Manufacturing and the Manufacturing Extension Partnership. Together with the Technical Assistance Program, Purdue provides assistance in basic and applied research projects and on-site training and innovation assistance."

The summit begins at 9 a.m., and Purdue President Martin C. Jischke will discuss the goals of the summit at 9:15 a.m. in Stewart Center's Fowler Hall. Skillman will talk about Indiana's efforts to improve the competitiveness of the state's manufacturers at 9:30 a.m. Engler will give the keynote speech at 10 a.m.

Skillman has served as Indiana's second in command since 2005. She oversees the Indiana State Department of Agriculture, Office of Community and Rural Affairs, Office of Energy and Defense Development, Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority, and the Office of Tourism Development. She chairs the Indiana Counter Terrorism and Security Council.

Elected Michigan's 46th governor in 1990, Engler served three terms before becoming president and chief executive officer of the National Association of Manufacturing, which is the largest industry trade group in the United States. In 2005 Engler was named vice chairman of the President's Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations, the U.S. government's senior trade advisory panel.

Engler's talk will be followed by a panel discussion, "Manufacturing Competitiveness: Industry Views." Pat Kiely of the Indiana Manufacturing Association will lead a panel of representatives from the automotive, electrical and pharmaceutical industries.

A luncheon program includes Gerry Dick, host and creator of Inside Indiana Business.

"Gerry Dick has an insider's view of manufacturing in Indiana because he has talked to as many manufacturers as anyone I know," Sullivan said.

In the afternoon, attendees can choose to attend interactive sessions at 2:15 and 3:45 on issues Indiana manufacturers must deal with to remain globally competitive. Topics include supply chain connections and requirements for successful supplier relationships in aerospace, automotive, heavy equipment, medical device and pharmaceutical industries. Annually requested sessions on work force education and research and development also will be included in the afternoon sessions.

A poster session on manufacturing-related research by students from Purdue and other colleges and universities throughout Indiana will be available all day, starting at 8 a.m. The Society of Manufacturing Engineers has donated $3,000 in prize money for the student competition.

"In addition to co-sponsoring this event, we also fund a product lifecycle management grant that contributes to the future of manufacturing," said Steve Quinlan, senior program officer of the education foundation for the group. "We're pleased to participate in a way that recognizes students who are the future of the manufacturing work force."

The summit wraps up at 5 p.m. A complete summit schedule and free online registration is available at

In addition to Purdue, summit sponsors include Central Indiana Corporate Partnership, Indiana Economic Development Corporation, Indiana Manufacturers Association, Indiana Health Industry Forum, Inside INdiana Business, Ivy Tech Community College, National Association of Manufacturers and TechPoint.

Purdue's Center for Advanced Manufacturing at Discovery Park supports research to develop and improve manufacturing processes, productivity and materials in conjunction with Indiana manufacturers. The center for the last two years has sponsored regional manufacturing summits to address local issues and challenges and explore opportunities for collaboration.

Writer: Maggie Morris, (765) 494-2432,

Sources: John Sullivan, (765) 494-1279,

Steve Shade, Center for Advanced Manufacturing managing director, (765) 494-1279,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

Note to Journalists: Video b-roll of Purdue's advanced manufacturing research is available by contacting Maggie Morris, Purdue News Service, at (765) 494-2432,

Mechanical engineering doctoral student Kevin Schoeffel controls a laser-cladding system developed as part of research led by Yung Shin, a professor of mechanical engineering and director of Purdue's Center for Laser-Based Manufacturing. The system is an example of advanced manufacturing research at Purdue, which will be discussed May 10 at the university's sixth annual Advanced Manufacturing Summit (Purdue News Service photo/David Umberger)

A publication quality photo is available at


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