Manufacturing has been the foundation of the American economy and a powerful driver of innovation and entrepreneurship since the days of the Industrial Revolution. Today, manufacturing has moved far beyond its roots to encompass a diverse array of technologies and processes for making everything from lightweight vehicles to engineered tissue. WPI, which has been contributing new ideas, new technologies, and new talent to drive the evolution of manufacturing since its founding in 1865, is today playing a pivotal role in a new advanced manufacturing revolution.

A Legacy of Manufacturing Innovation

WPI was established more than 150 years ago to generate the human and intellectual capital required to help transform the United States into a manufacturing powerhouse. True to our founding mission—to prepare students to put theory into impactful practice—our approach to manufacturing education and research has always had a distinct practical focus. Our graduates have founded and led manufacturing businesses of all kinds, while innovations from our labs have not only made existing industries more competitive, but have helped create and build whole new industries. Fast forward to today, and the Institute is continuing to help drive the evolution of manufacturing.

MANUFACTURING USA

WPI is a member of eight of the 14 Manufacturing USA institutes. Manufacturing USA, “connects people, ideas, and technology to solve industry-relevant advanced manufacturing challenges.” Learn more.

WPI Manufacturing in the News

The Worcester Telegram & Gazette reports on a new initiative at the Metal Processing Institute that is looking at how aluminum recycled from vehicles could boost manufacturing.

A 21st Century Hub for Manufacturing

The Daily Herd recently sat down with Bogdan Vernescu, Vice Provost for Research, to discuss the changing face of a manufacturing economy, WPI’s involvement in Manufacturing USA, and the future of manufacturing in the United States.

A History Steeped in Manufacturing

Manufacturing has been part of WPI’s core since our founding. Early students put theory into practice in the Washburn Shops—a working manufacturing plant. Now the oldest building in the United States dedicated to engineering education, the Shops houses research and education programs and labs dedicated to advancing modern manufacturing.

Keeping Manufacturing Competitive

With more than 12 million jobs at stake and 11.8% of our GDP comprised by manufacturing (source: NIST), manufacturers need to understand key industry challenges and develop sustainable solutions to stay competitive. With NSF funding, WPI launched the Center for Advanced Research in Drying (CARD) to address this issue and develop new technologies that will help companies save energy and produce better products.

MANUFACTURING ENGINEERING EDUCATION

WPI’s Manufacturing Engineering undergraduate and graduate programs focus on producing engineering designs that bring ideas into practical, cost-effective use in a production process that is less expensive, safer, and healthier for the planet.

Bringing Biomanufacturing Education and Training into the Fold

Biomanufacturing harnesses the extraordinary advances of biotechnology and regenerative medicine to produce new kinds of therapies. WPI, a leader in research and education in this emerging field, offers symposia that brings together industry and academia to review new technologies, process developments, and research findings—and to share experiences, insights, and operational challenges the field is facing. 

Nurturing Young Innovators Who Are Driving Innovation

Faculty researchers work alongside the next generation of great minds to find ways to propel manufacturing. According to NIST, manufacturing accounts for 68% of U.S. research and development. Aaron Birt, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow at WPI, has excelled at identifying innovative technologies and integrating them into existing processes to increase efficiency or effectiveness. 

MEDIA INQUIRIES

For information about WPI and its involvement in any of the Manufacturing USA initiatives, contact Andy Baron, Senior Manager of Trade Communications for University Marketing and Communications.