Inspiring the next generation of manufacturers was the theme at the Manufacturing Day Expo, held recently at Northwest State Community College in Archbold, Ohio. Now in its fifth year, the event brings manufacturers and high school juniors and seniors together to teach students about the opportunities available to them right here in northwest Ohio. This year’s event hosted 40 area manufacturers and almost 400 area students.
“This is not your grandpa’s factory” is one of the key components of showing these students that manufacturing is clean, automated and safe. It is also a well-paying career choice that typically includes health care benefits, retirement and tuition reimbursement.
New this year, automotive industry manufacturers were highlighted in the College’s north parking lot. Tier 1 and Tier 2 suppliers to automobile companies like GM, Chrysler, Honda and Ford were able to show off the parts that they make and where you would find them in your vehicle. Whether it was brakes, seat frames or windshields, the students were able to make the connections of how important northwest Ohio manufacturers are.
Inside the Atrium, numerous manufactures brought hands-on activities, videos and plenty of success stories of young adults who graduated and went into the manufacturing industry.
Here’s what some of the participating companies had to say about the event:
“Sauder is excited to share in the manufacturing day experience for our northwest Ohio area youth. Our facilities are filled with technology and robots that run our day-to-day operations. After students experience Manufacturing Day, they can see how modern manufacturing offers job security and stability and a variety of career paths,” said Kevin Sauder, president/CEO of Sauder Woodworking.
“Northwest Ohio is a great place to live and work! Manufacturing Day is a prime opportunity for students to learn about employment opportunities available in their own back yard. Worthington Industries is proud to sponsor an event that not only encourages, but facilitates the building of relationships between students and employers. This year’s level of student engagement with employers was very impressive and we hope they continue to consider local employment after high school,” said Jessica Double, HR generalist at Worthington Industries.
“The Manufacturing Day event at NSCC is a celebration of what we do in America – we make things! This community event connecting local companies and schools is our attempt to educate the youth on the career opportunities in our community. We have world-class companies with world-class career opportunities for local youth,” said Jim Drewes, executive director of workforce development at Custom Training Solutions.
About manufacturing Day
Manufacturing Day is planned and coordinated through a partnership comprised of Custom Training Solutions, a division of Northwest State Community College, the Henry County CIC, Fulton County Economic Development, Williams County Economic Development, Defiance County Economic Development and Paulding County Economic Development. Students also completed a pre and a post-event survey showing an increase of 12% of students who would consider working in manufacturing and an 8% increase on whether they knew what manufacturing was when comparing the pre and post-event surveys.