Boost to Future Jobs in Materials and Manufacturing

In his first State of the Union address, President Joe Biden made a bold claim about the future of manufacturing in the United States. He spoke about 800,000 new jobs in manufacturing on the horizon, with many of them involving advanced manufacturing positions rooted in materials science. The President’s remarks underscored the crucial role of materials science in modern manufacturing and highlighted the potential for growth in this vital sector. (See Fact Sheet linked at end of post.)

Materials science studies the properties, processing, and performance of materials. It encompasses a wide range of materials, from metals and ceramics to polymers and composites, and it plays a critical role in many industries, including aerospace, automotive, energy, and healthcare. Advanced manufacturing uses cutting-edge technologies, such as automation, robotics, and artificial intelligence, to improve efficiency and productivity in manufacturing processes. By leveraging the latest materials science research, advanced manufacturing can create innovative products that are stronger, lighter, and more durable than ever before.

The President’s focus on advanced manufacturing and materials science reflects a growing recognition of their importance to the American economy. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, materials science, and engineering is one of the fastest-growing fields in the United States, with a projected growth rate of 6% per year (source linked below).

This growth is driven by demand from the aerospace, defense, electronics, and healthcare industries, which require new materials with specific properties to meet their needs.

In addition to creating new jobs, advanced manufacturing and materials science can positively impact the environment. By developing materials that are more sustainable and energy-efficient, manufacturers can reduce their environmental footprint and contribute to a more sustainable future.

For example, lightweight materials, such as carbon fiber composites, can improve the fuel efficiency of vehicles and reduce their emissions. Similarly, advanced materials for renewable energy, such as solar panels and wind turbines, can help to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels.

President Biden’s remarks about the future of manufacturing in the United States underscore the critical role of materials science in driving innovation and growth in the advanced manufacturing sector. With its potential to create new jobs, improve efficiency, and contribute to a more sustainable future, materials science, and advanced manufacturing are poised to play a leading role in shaping the American economy for years to come.

In two years, the President has overseen a historic economic recovery and laid the foundation for steady and stable growth in the years to come—a landmark, equitable economic recovery. President Biden’s financial strategy led to a historic recovery with tangible benefits for workers and families.

The economy has created more than 12 million jobs—including more than 800,000 manufacturing jobs—and the unemployment rate is at a 54-year low, including near-record lows for Black workers. The unemployment rate for Hispanic workers hit a record low last year. The past two years were also the best for new small business applications on record. None of this progress was pre-ordained.

Before President Biden signed his Rescue Plan into law, experts predicted creating this many jobs would take far longer. And few—if any—experts predicted it would be possible to get the unemployment rate down to a level last seen in 1969. Before the Rescue Plan passed, the Congressional Budget Office projected the unemployment rate in the first quarter of 2023 would be 4.8%, rather than its current level of 3.4%.

Additional Reading:

  1. Materials Engineers : Occupational Outlook Handbook
  2. FACT SHEET: The Biden Economic Plan Is Working | The White House
  3. Joe Biden’s manufacturing push has netted $200 billion in committed building | Fortune
  4. President Biden’s Push to Make Things In America Again : The NPR Politics Podcast 

With our White House mentions in this post, we also have to point you to our post last year when Professor Jean Frank was invited to the White House where she discussed:

  • Diversifying the space workforce, focusing on inspiring students and reducing barriers.
  • The workshop involved discussions on in-demand skills, evidence-based practices, and strategies to foster growth and diversity in the space industry.