Browse Publications Technical Papers 1999-01-1637
1999-05-10

Preparing for High Performance Work Organizations – The UDM / GC Bachelor of Manufacturing Engineering Program 1999-01-1637

There are many analogies between the development of education and industrial development in the United States during the 1900s. In both segments of our society the emphasis on quantity of output led to the use of ever more specialized tools and concepts with sub-optimization often reducing the overall output quality. More recently both education and industry, especially the manufacturing sector, have recognized the value added concepts of integration, i.e., applying a holistic approach to their operations. In so doing a new workplace has been defined, the “High Performance Work Organization” (HPWO) (1).
The discussion of the effects this development has had on manufacturing of goods and services is left to other presentations in this conference. This presentation focuses on an example from education which illustrates how integration of experiential and academic activities has been set as the cornerstone of a new construct for engineering education. That example is the Bachelor of Manufacturing Engineering degree program conferred by the University of Detroit Mercy (UDM). The program was developed jointly by UDM and its partners (Lawrence Technological University, Lehigh University, University of Michigan, Wayne State University, Cincinnati Machine, DaimlerChrysler, Detroit Diesel, EDS, Ford, General Motors, Focus:HOPE, and the Society for Manufacturing Engineering (SME)) in the NSF-supported Greenfield Coalition (GC) for New Manufacturing Education. The discussion begins with a description of the HPWO and the qualities needed to participate in an HPWO. This is followed by discussion of the operation of the Greenfield Coalition and how its operating philosophy and practice illustrate the HPWO concept of preparing individuals to become part of a learning organization.

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