|Helping to Educate the Next Generation
NewAge Industries hosted a group of middle school students in December to help them learn about careers in manufacturing. The students from Neil A. Armstrong Middle School of Fairless Hills, Pa., filmed their tour for a video contest titled "What's So Cool About Manufacturing?™" The children returned in February to capture additional video and conduct employee interviews.
The annual contest, produced by "Dream It Do It PA," is designed to bring awareness of manufacturing careers to middle school students. The contest involves the production of a short video that highlights career opportunities at manufacturing companies like NewAge.
"When I was approached about this," said Ken Baker, NewAge's CEO, "I was on board immediately. I believe it's important for kids to know that manufacturing jobs don't have to be boring. There are positions at NewAge that involve computerized testing and monitoring equipment, innovative machinery development, quality control and clean room operations, engineering, and other advanced manufacturing techniques. They're jobs that may not require a four-year college degree, but STEM skills and a strong desire for continued learning definitely come into play."
Started in Pennsylvania's Lehigh Valley region in 2013, the Dream It Do It PA challenge has widened to include the Greater Philadelphia area, Berks and Chester counties, and the Pittsburgh region. Schools are matched with area manufacturing companies, and the students then visit those companies with their teachers. The children shoot video, take photographs, interview employees, and later edit their footage to produce a video highlighting the types of advanced manufacturing careers available.
Several Armstrong Middle School students and two teachers toured NewAge's silicone tubing production areas, plastic tubing extrusion rooms, custom hose assembly shops, product testing areas, quality assurance stations, and our warehouse.
"The testing areas were quite popular," Baker said. "That's where we stress samples until they rupture and get to blow stuff up."
The students' videos are organized under a Dream It Do It PA program titled "What's So Cool About Manufacturing?" Videos are voted upon, and an awards ceremony is held. Armstrong Middle School was one of 14 entrants in the 2017 Philadelphia region and won the "Outstanding Program" award.
Baker noted that "The students and teachers were impressed with the scope of what we do here and seemed to really take it all in, watching how a product is made from start to finish. I hope the experience opened their eyes to the technical aspects and possibilities of manufacturing careers."
Find out more about Pennsylvania's Dream It Do It PA program at http://dreamitdoitpa.com/.
"What's So Cool About Manufacturing?™" trademark Manufacturers Resource Center.
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