The IFPS Spring Meeting, held in New Orleans, Louisiana, was conducted in person and virtually. We are excited to report that meeting attendance was more than 90% in person!
The Education Committee has continued to develop new training videos to help with certification preparation. Since our Fall meeting in San Diego, IFPS has developed two new educational videos visible to members only: Proper Identification of Fasteners and Fittings and a Fluid Power Symbology. The committee will continue to develop these of types videos. The Education Committee has also continued to diligently work on releasing brand-new IFPS safety posters. The feedback on the newly released Fluid Power Math & Hydraulic Mechanic Training Modules is excellent, and they are selling well.
The IFPS has also successfully conducted two Fluid Power Fundamentals Courses in conjunction with Waukesha County Technical College. This course is a great foundation for anyone who wants to learn fluid power basics, and IFPS will continue to offer them for as long as they remain popular. In addition, IFPS was presented with an opportunity to partner with the Auburn Career Center to use IFPS certifications as the basis for their curriculum starting with the Connector & Conductor (C&C). The C&C pilot occurred in January and finished in February; based on the initial feedback, the pilot was a success! The advisory committee will meet soon to debrief and start planning the second semester. The IFPS hopes to launch more programs like this in other locations. IFPS has launched an instructor-led HS Review Training course, a 12-week Certification Review led by Tom Blansett. The committee has plans to run these types of courses in the future, starting with the Pneumatic Specialist Certification in late summer/early fall.
In June 2022, the Certification Committee reviewed both the C&C Certification Study Manual and test. This “mini” review consisted of updated graphics and standards. The committee planned a major revision in 2023, so a subcommittee was convened for that purpose. So far, the subcommittee has reviewed and updated the study manual and continues its work to review and upgrade the written and job performance tests. The planned release of the fully upgraded C & C certification is set for late spring/early summer 2023. Concern over the pass/fail ratio, Ms. Pollander convened the MHM subcommittee to review and update some questions on the MHM certification test. A Subcommittee was also convened to begin working on a major revision of the ECS certification, and the updated material is expected to be released in fall 2023.
Tom Blansett Proposed an outline for the technician certifications; he proposed that only one certification be developed for the technicians and that the JP or hands-on test be conducted online. The committee approved the outline; however, they determined it would be best to develop two certifications, one for pneumatics and one for hydraulics. If you are a certified member and are interested in participating on any of the subcommittees, please email Donna Pollander at Dpollander@ifps.org. The committee plans to upgrade the pneumatic mechanic once the technician certifications are underway.
The Hydraulic Specialist test translation is complete and is available to purchase. The committee will begin working on the translation of the MHM written test this month. The non-technical “associate” Certification subcommittee determined that the development of the study manual has stalled; the committee agreed, asking Ms. Pollander and Mr. Blansett to finalize the study manual, draft the test questions, and review with the subcommittee.
Ms. Pollander proposed a grant program for educators to obtain their first certification – free. The committee approved the grant program. For more information on the program visit, https://www.ifps.org/certification-grant-for-educators-2
The Marketing and Public Relations Committee and staff have been working on increasing our social media presence; our followers across all platforms have increased since the last meeting. In addition to the growth of our social media, the upgrade to the website to continue to enhance our visitor’s experience has officially begun. The oversight committee meets quarterly to ensure that IFPS is satisfied with the content published in the Fluid Power Journal as well as help brainstorm article ideas.
The Membership Committee provided an update on IFPS’s increased communication with the members. Because of the dissolution of the Chapters, the committee drafted and approved an updated mission statement: The Membership committee will implement innovative strategies that will increase the value of an IFPS membership which will involve, influence, attract and retain members. The committee also met via conference last month to brainstorm ideas on offering members opportunities to communicate and network. The committee decided to hold another conference call in the upcoming weeks to continue brainstorming and to determine which are feasible to execute successfully. The committee also determined that the mentorship program will continue next year but with limiting the mentors and mentees to five, with additional clearer communication.