Sept. 22, 2021
The Department of Defense today announced the award of five grants totaling approximately $25 million under the Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program by the Office of Local Defense Community Cooperation. The awards derive from Fiscal Year 2021 appropriated funding and leverage an additional $11.7 million in non-Federal funds for a total investment of $36.7 million. The Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program makes long-term investments in critical skills, facilities, workforce development, research and development, and small business support in order to strengthen the national security innovation base.
On August 11, 2021, the office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment designated five Defense Manufacturing Communities and instructed the Office of Local Defense Community Cooperation to invite grant applications from them based upon the relative competitive ranking of their proposals by a Defense Manufacturing Community Review Panel.
The grant awards are as follows:
- $5 million to the Commonwealth of Virginia Office of Veterans and Defense Affairs-led Defense Manufacturing Consortia to undertake a $7,045,113 project to recruit, train and modernize the Commonwealth’s maritime workforce. The goal of the Virginia Maritime Industrial Base Consortium is to increase manufacturing capacity, capability, resiliency, and diversity in the maritime industrial base by creating a cross-region K-12 to university training pipeline for skilled workers and manufacturing engineers to support the Navy’s sustainment and shipbuilding needs.
- $5 million to the North Carolina State University Industry Expansion Solutions-led Defense Manufacturing Consortia to undertake a $7,466,588 project in the area of advanced textiles/autonomous wearables and implement a strategy to address immediate ramp-up needs as businesses transition out of COVID-19 restricted operations to longer-term technological opportunities.
- $4.99 million to the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station-led Defense Manufacturing Community Consortia to undertake a $6,947,453 project to inject targeted Smart Manufacturing skills and technologies into the diverse manufacturing portfolio of the Texas defense aerospace manufacturing ecosystem. The consortium intends to deliver outcomes in the areas of workforce development; structured networking & supply chain development; policy & economic development; and research & infrastructure.
- $5 million to the University of Tennessee at Knoxville-led Defense Manufacturing Community Consortia to undertake a $8,624,399 project to address next-generation machine tools and smart manufacturing processes; create an education and training pipeline to recruit and prepare the future workforce needed to operate these new technologies; and integrate academic, government, and corporate partners to translate these advances into industry leadership and economic impact.
- $5 million to the Wichita State University National Institute for Aviation Research-led Defense Manufacturing Community Consortia to undertake a $6,576,590 project to expand capabilities, processes, sustainment planning, workforce, and engineering competencies to prototype development for weapon system parts and assemblies.
The Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program is authorized by Section 846 of Public Law 115-232, which enabled the Secretary of Defense to establish a program to designate and support consortiums as Defense Manufacturing Communities to strengthen the national security industrial base.For additional information about these programs visit the Office of Local Defense Community Cooperation website at https://oldcc.gov/defense-manufacturing-community-support-program.