Spreading the word about manufacturing

Students check out local manufacturers exhibiting at the Community College of Denver as part of national Manufacturing Day. (Photo: Community College of Denver)

National Manufacturing Day is all about celebrating manufacturing and inspiring future manufacturers. A number of community colleges opened their doors to the community to show off their training facilities, get people interested in careers in manufacturing, and spotlight their partnerships with local industry.

Wisconsin’s Blackhawk Technical College (BTC), partnering with Rock County 5.0, the School District of Janesville and 26 different employers, hosted more than 600 area high school students as part of an effort to change perceptions about today’s manufacturing environment and draw attention to career opportunities in manufacturing.

The students visited BTC’s Advanced Manufacturing Training Center to learn about the college’s manufacturing programs as well as two businesses in the region to learn more about jobs in a variety of manufacturing professions.

Working together

South Central College (SCC) in Minnesota hosted “Made in Faribault 2017: A Salute to Manufacturing,” a luncheon and program featuring a panel of local manufacturing representatives who shared their insights and forecasts for manufacturing careers. SCC also partnered with businesses for a two-day Tour of Manufacturing, which featured 14 manufacturing facilities.

Community College of Denver (CCD) and Metropolitan State University of Denver partnered to offer a campus-to-campus tour for the community to explore manufacturing programs and career pathways.

More than 300 local students toured classrooms and labs of MSU Denver’s new Aerospace and Engineering Sciences Building, while CCD’s Advanced Manufacturing Center provided student-led welding activities that involved welding simulators and a discussion with welding students about education and careers. A key goal for CCD was to promote the need for women in the manufacturing industry.

Last week, the American Association of Community Colleges held a congressional briefing in Washington, D.C., that highlighted community college and industry partnerships, including ones focused on preparing a workforce for manufacturing careers.

A full month of events

Though National Manufacturing Day was officially October 6, colleges are holding events throughout the month.

Ohio’s Lorain County Community College on October 10 hosted an event with the Society of Women Engineers that highlighted careers in STEM and provide hands-on experience to attendees. Female engineering students and engineers from industry and the U.S. Army shared their experiences.

Northeast Community College in Nebraska will celebrate Manufacturing Day on October 26 by showcasing manufacturing program labs and inviting representatives from area companies to answer questions and discuss career opportunities.

This excerpt comes from an article at the AACC 21st-Century Center.