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Building America’s Future: Smart Investments in Advanced Manufacturing

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From the front row, Secretary Bryson watches President Obama at the Rolls-Royce Crosspointe Manufacturing Plant

Guest blog post by Commerce Secretary John Bryson

I had the opportunity today to join President Obama on a visit to the Rolls-Royce Crosspointe facility in Prince George’s County, Virginia. This facility manufactures components of some of the company’s most advanced airplane engines.  The company announced that it is planning to add 140 new jobs at Crosspointe and more than 100 additional jobs in Indiana manufacturing components for aircraft wings. 

As I have said and as the President said today, we are fully committed to helping U.S. businesses build things here and sell them everywhere.  The Crosspointe facility is an important example of how we are doing just that, and it was remarkable to have the opportunity to see these efforts in action.

Crosspointe received a $4 million investment from the Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) to help establish the Commonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing (CCAM).  Later this summer, the CCAM, an applied research center developed by eight companies, the state of Virginia, and three leading state universities, will open its doors.  This will help bridge the gap from research to product development while supporting the skills that workers need to get good jobs in advanced manufacturing.  In addition, CCAM will form linkages to local community colleges to promote workforce training and high-skilled employment.  The project is expected to create 128 jobs, while at the same time strengthening advanced manufacturing in the immediate area, and generating $22 million in private investment.

Over the past two years, the U.S. manufacturing sector has added 429,000 manufacturing jobs, the biggest jump since the 1990s.  In that last two months alone, over 80,000 jobs have been added. 

To build on this momentum, the President today announced a $1-billion proposal for a National Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI), to create a network of up to 15 Institutes for Manufacturing Innovation around the country – building on the successful development of places like CCAM.  These Institutes will serve as regional hubs of manufacturing excellence that will help to make our manufacturers more innovative at home and competitive abroad, while also encouraging more overall investment in the United States from both domestic and foreign firms. The EDA grant that made CCAM possible is one step toward the creating this engine of innovative advanced manufacturing facilities all over the country.

More immediately, as part of the Administration’s We Can’t Wait efforts, the Commerce Department will have a lead role in launching a pilot institute for the NNMI.  This will be a competitive award funded by $45 million from the Departments of Commerce, Defense, Energy and the National Science Foundation.  

At the Commerce Department, we are also hard at work on several other initiatives to support American manufacturers and help increase their global competitiveness. For example, through our National Institute of Standards & Technology, we are investing more than $135 million in advanced manufacturing research and development.  We also recently created the Advanced Manufacturing National Program Office to bring together stakeholders and drive investments and initiatives in advanced manufacturing.  I also encourage everyone to check out Manufacturing.gov to find out more about how we support manufacturers.

We are also leading the President’s SelectUSA initiative, which is encouraging even more companies like Rolls Royce to increase their direct investment in the United States – by building new facilities here and hiring talented Americans to work at them.

It’s clear that we need we need a robust, innovative manufacturing sector making products here and selling them around the globe.  This will ensure that manufacturers create keep creating good, 21st century American jobs.

Learn more about the Administration’s manufacturing initiatives.

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Data mining pilot experience at Southern California Edison

Secretary Bryson,
I believe there is a more cost effective approach to growing our manufacturing base that is little used by small and medium manufacturers. We piloted a "Deep Web" Business Growth project last year out of SCE's Economic Development Services group. If you would like to know more, please contact me at Edison.
Jeff Lebow

Please clarify a few points,

When you said you made a $4 million investment to Crosspointe, that means Rolls-Royce, correct?

When you said you made a $4 million "investment," what does investment mean? A gift? A loan? Will it be paid back?

Also, CCAM sounds like a project to train people to work in a factory. You used a big flowery sentence to describe it, but never actually explained what it does. Am I on point that it trains people to work in factories?

Thank You

Clarification

The recipients of the $4 million EDA grant are the University of Virginia, the University of Virginia Foundation, and the Commonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing (CCAM), a 501(c)3. To clarify, Rolls-Royce has a manufacturing facility at the Crosspointe campus. Crosspointe is also home to CCAM.

The investment is a grant. Grants are awarded competitively and do not need to be paid back.

CCAM is a cutting edge research center. Their primary purpose is to enable research, development, and commercialization of advanced manufacturing components for multiple industries and companies. Programmatically, there is also a workforce training component. For more information about CCAM, go to www.ccam-va.com