Wilton resident Sudhanshu Nahata, Ph.D., a mechanical design engineer for ASML US in Wilton, has received the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME’s) 2019 Dave Dornfeld Manufacturing Vision Award.

Nahata’s associated Blue Sky Competition submission, “Computer Games as a Future of Manufacturing Education,” was used as the basis for his award selection.

Nahata’s award-winning concept uses gamification, specifically computer games, as a potential method to attract and retain college-age students and transition them into well-paid, rewarding manufacturing careers. His submission focused on the predicted 2.4 million positions that may be left unfilled within the next 10 years due to a skills shortage. Addressing this shortage is integral to the mission of SME.

The Blue Sky Competition is supported and funded by the National Science Foundation. The competition looks beyond traditional methods in U.S. manufacturing research and education, asking participants for innovative, revolutionary ideas to move the industry forward.

For 2019, there were seven finalists with one chosen as the overall winner. “The Dornfeld Award was designed for individuals like Dr. Nahata who are not afraid to ask, ‘What if?’,” said Mark L. Michalski, 2019 SME president. “For U.S. manufacturing to continue at its extraordinary pace, we need these visionaries to share their transformative ideas with the manufacturing community.”