The Future of Work Project

The MCC Economic and Workforce Development Center (EWDC) is committed to better understanding the future of work and its implications on the Finger Lakes region. Recent projects completed by the MCC Economic and Workforce Development Center focus on the potential impacts of current and emerging digital industrial technologies, also known as Industry 4.0 (i4.0), and the impact these rapid technological advancements will have on businesses in the Finger Lakes region within the next decade.


Watch the Careers of the Future Mini-Movie

Careers of the Future Mini-Movie

The MCC Economic and Workforce Development Center partnered with Edge Factor and produced a mini-movie titled “Careers of the Future.” This video features local industry partners of the Economic Workforce Development Center and narrates how emerging Industry 4.0 technologies like AI, automation, robotics, cyber security, and the Internet of Things (IoTT) are impacting industry and creating job opportunities in the Finger Lakes region.


Download the Future of the Technician Workforce Study

The Future Technician Workforce Study

This report discusses the potential impacts of Industry 4.0 technologies on the Finger Lakes region over the next 5 to 10 years. This study is based on extensive input from over 80 local companies outlining the skill-sets that will be required of the future technicians in our local economy. The report examines how i4.0 technologies are likely to change business operations and technician job functions in four key industry sectors: manufacturing and automation, information technology, healthcare, and human resources and professional services. It also explores the roles of employers and community colleges in supporting the Finger Lakes region’s new generation of technician workers.

Click here for an Executive Summary of the report.


National Science Foundation logo

SUNY Polytechnic Institute/National Science Foundation Grant

MCC was awarded $183,066 to support a 2-year comprehensive assessment of select engineering technology and manufacturing related programs within MCC’s Economic Workforce Development Center. The assessment will be based on the Unified Competency Model (UCM) for Advanced Manufacturing which identifies skill sets required across strategic industry sectors to strengthen connections among the microelectronics industry, workers, and education and training providers. SEMI, a global industry association for the microelectronics industry, led the development of the new UCM in partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor – Employment and Training Administration (USDOL-ETA).

This project is part of MCC’s ongoing Future of Work project which seeks to ensure credit and non-credit industry offerings are relevant to emerging high tech skill sets and competencies required by the local industry.



As part of this ongoing project, the MCC Economic and Workforce Development Center is committed to follow-up research projects suggested by findings in the Future of the Technician Workforce study. The EWDC is currently exploring emergent career pathways within cloud computing, cyber security and the business side of health care operations among relevant Rochester employers. The results of these studies will be published and shared with the community.

Finger Lakes Workforce Development Center Coming to MCC Downtown Campus

The 50,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art center, which is in development, will be housed on the fifth and sixth floors of the MCC downtown campus. The new Finger Lakes Workforce Development (FWD) Center will support short-term and accelerated training programs in technology-oriented careers centered on emergent smart technologies and Industry 4.0 skill-sets, and will focus on training programs in: mechatronic systems, automation and robotics, industrial internet of things, and skilled trade technologies. The fast-track, industry-driven education and training provided by the FWD Center is designed to meet the evolving workforce demands of the Finger Lakes region and place individuals in high-demand jobs within the local economy.

Design and construction of the proposed center will be managed by Monroe County, and paid for by $11.4 million in funding from SUNY and New York State. The Center is scheduled to begin operations in January 2022.

Ralph C Wilson Jr Foundation

The Careers of the Future mini-movie and the Future Technician Workforce study were both made possible by a generous grant from the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation.