Months after launching a new giving and recognition society within the NFPA Education and Technology Foundation to increase support for fluid power education and research, the National Fluid Power Association (NFPA) and the Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power (CCEFP) have formed a collaborative, synergistic staffing plan to provide administrative support for those activities and to better promote the fluid power industry to future employees and customers.
“There [is] a lot of alignment between the activities of the CCEFP and the marketing and education objectives of the NFPA,” says Eric Lanke, NFPA CEO. “Fluid power research performed by CCEFP universities not only develops additional teaching resources and connects more students to our industry, it helps to expand fluid power’s innovation capacity. Promoting CCEFP research objectives and outcomes can therefore improve the image of our technology in the minds of our customers and of our industry in the minds of aspiring engineers.”
The collaborative staffing plan has been designed to leverage the inherent strengths and align resources within both organizations towards this collective goal. It will allow the CCEFP to increase its focus on its core strengths of research and education, and connect it more seamlessly to the better resourced and established marketing and communication functions of the NFPA.
“It’s truly a win-win for both organizations,” says University of Minnesota professor Kim Stelson, CCEFP Director. “As the center transitions away from NSF funding, this administrative collaboration with the NFPA will help us both broaden the industry’s awareness of our activities and deepen our impact on its behalf. I’m really excited about the added potential this collaboration brings to both organizations.”
Currently, a team of two CCEFP and three NFPA staff people have been assembled to focus on a variety of collaborative projects. One shining example is the Fluid Power Innovation and Research Conference, a co-sponsored venture designed to promote the future of fluid power technology and create more industry/academic partnerships. Planned for October 2015 in Chicago, the conference is being organized by CCEFP with NFPA handling the marketing and logistics.
“It’s a great initial project for the team to sink its teeth into,” Lanke says. “We expect much success there and in a host of other areas.”