Industry Event
Creating “Ecosystems” to Produce the Next Generation of Optics Technicians
31 January 2024 • 2:45 PM - 3:45 PM PST | Moscone Center, Expo Stage, Hall DE (Exhibit Level) 
Optics manufacturing is one of 12 initiatives that are part of the National Imperative for Industrial Skills (NIIS) program of the U.S. Department of Defense. Each initiative is based on an ecosystem model in which manufacturing companies support a training program based at a community college. In this session, we will dive into what this means in terms of the AmeriCOM Optics Ecosystems. All aspects of an optics ecosystem will be explored including how the investments made by optics companies benefit the companies, the training providers, and the industry as a whole.

The session will begin with a trends report that shows successful workforce development models, from those that garner support from Big Tech firms through those that are more local and grassroots and involve small to mid-size companies. Panelists will include representatives from industry who have stepped up their support and from academic administrators and faculty who design the training programs to suit industry needs.


Presentations


Opening remarks

Jennifer Cable
 
 
Jennifer Cable
President
Thorlabs (United States)


Trends in workforce development for industrial & technical trades

Alexis Vogt
 
 
Alexis Vogt
Workforce and Higher Education Executive Director
AmeriCOM (United States)


Best practice examples in optics and photonics industry

Samrad Bukovcan
 
 
Samrad Bukovcan
Director of Global Business Development
Moore Nanotechnology (United States)


Bill Warger
 
 
Bill Warger
Director of Photonics Education
Thorlabs Mobile Lab (United States)


Donn Silberman
 
 
Donn Silberman
Volunteer
Optical Society of Southern California (OSSC), Vital Link (United States)


NIIS initiative ecosystem model

Alexis Vogt
 
 
Alexis Vogt
Workforce and Higher Education Executive Director
AmeriCOM (United States)




Panel Discussion

Questions will be directed to particular people and will focus on how the ecosystem model benefits the optics + photonics industry overall. Specific discussion points will cover the benefits that accrue to participating companies, training providers, and regional economies.

How the Ecosystem Model Benefits the Optics + Photonics Industry:
Building the industry as a whole
Benefits to participating companies
Benefits to training providers
Benefits to regional economies and to building national manufacturing workforce


Moderator

 
 
Jennifer Cable
President
Thorlabs (United States)


Panelists

 
 
Alexis Vogt
Workforce and Higher Education Executive Director
AmeriCOM (United States)
 
 
Samrad Bukovcan
Director of Global Business Development
Moore Nanotechnology (United States)
 
 
Bill Warger
Director of Photonics Education
Thorlabs Mobile Lab (United States)
 
 
Donn Silberman
Founder, Volunteer
Optical Society of Southern California (OSSC), Vital Link (United States)


Q+A