Toyota Transitions National Apprenticeship Program to The Manufacturing Institute

Huntsville, AL (Sept. 10, 2019) – The Manufacturing Institute, the workforce and education partner of the National Association of Manufacturers, and Toyota Motor North America announced today a partnership to transition operation and stewardship of the Federation for Advanced Manufacturing Education program, created by the automaker to develop skilled workers, to the MI. NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons and MI Executive Director Carolyn Lee were joined today by Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump to announce the program expansion.

FAME is an employer collaborative that consists of a two-year industrial degree known as the Advanced Manufacturing Technician program. AMT trains students of all ages and backgrounds—from recent high school graduates, to those interested in transitioning into manufacturing, to longtime manufacturing employees wanting to advance their career.

The program focuses on teaching technical qualifications in advanced manufacturing, as well as helping students develop professional skills and a deeper understanding of the manufacturing industry. It will serve as a model for apprenticeship education in manufacturing and will bolster the NAM and MI’s newly announced “Creators Wanted Fund,” an industry-driven campaign to inspire and drive more Americans to pursue careers in modern manufacturing.

“FAME has set the standard for industry-driven apprenticeships, and by taking it nationwide, we will open the door to high-paying manufacturing jobs for Americans across the country,” said Timmons, who also serves as chairman of the board of the MI. “Manufacturers have a half million jobs to fill today, and we’ll have millions more over the coming decade. Our industry is stepping up to be the solution and provide opportunities for Americans to find meaningful careers in a growing and transforming industry. Manufacturers are grateful for Toyota’s vision in launching this program nearly a decade ago and for the Trump administration’s vocal support for expanding apprenticeship programs in America.”

Ivanka Trump lauded the program as an example of public–private partnerships that will boost the administration’s effort to create pathways for all Americans and ensure our competitive edge.

“The Administration is committed to ensuring inclusive growth and opportunity in our booming economy by creating pathways for all Americans, regardless of age or background, to acquire the skills needed to secure and retain high paying jobs,” Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump said. “I applaud Toyota Motor North America and The Manufacturing Institute for expanding the FAME program, which will build upon the economic successes we’ve had in the manufacturing industry.”

“Since 2010, the Toyota FAME program has produced remarkably strong graduates. What started as a pilot program at our Kentucky plant has significantly grown to include just under 400 partner companies in 13 states,” said Chris Nielsen, TMNA executive vice president. “The program would not be where it is today without their support and collaboration.  We believe that when good ideas are shared, great things can happen. We’re excited to see the Toyota training model expanded nationwide and the top talent it will produce.”

“FAME is a fantastic model of the type of earn-and-learn initiatives that will be needed to overcome manufacturing’s workforce crisis and prepare our country for the future,” said Lee. “We appreciate Toyota’s vision and leadership in developing this program and are excited to expand FAME into a nationwide initiative to ensure that tomorrow’s manufacturing leaders can develop the skills and qualifications they need to enter rewarding careers in our industry.”

Supporting the manufacturing workforce is the MI’s primary focus. It heavily invests in programs, partnerships and research to promote modern manufacturing and jumpstart new approaches to growing manufacturing talent. Under the MI’s leadership, the FAME program is poised for continued growth and will greatly benefit from its network, expertise and associated programming, including national MFG DayHeroes MAKE America and STEP Ahead


About the MI

The MI is the education and workforce partner of the NAM. The MI drives programs and research to promote modern manufacturing and jumpstart new approaches to growing manufacturing talent. For more information, please visit

About Toyota

Toyota (NYSE:TM) has been a part of the cultural fabric in the U.S. and North America for more than 60 years and is committed to advancing sustainable, next-generation mobility through its Toyota and Lexus brands. During that time, Toyota has created a tremendous value chain as its teams have contributed to world-class design, engineering and assembly of more than 38 million cars and trucks in North America, where it has 14 manufacturing plants, 15 including its joint venture in Alabama (10 in the U.S.), and directly employs more than 47,000 people (more than 36,000 in the U.S.). Toyota’s 1,800 North American dealerships (nearly 1,500 in the U.S.) sold 2.8 million cars and trucks (2.4 million in the U.S.) in 2018.