There has been a shortage of skilled workers in manufacturing for several years now, particularly in positions that require more than a high school diploma, but less than a four-year college degree. One way to address this issue and introduce students to the opportunities available in manufacturing is through an internship program. These programs provide knowledge and hands-on experience which students can apply in real world environments.
On April 11, 2018, McWane Ductile Ohio (MDO) celebrated Intern/Co-op Appreciation Day. These interns are a valuable member of the MDO team and we appreciate the work they have done on several very dynamic projects.
AB&I partnered with Emiliano Sanchez and the Oakland Unified School District to host several middle school students and approximately 65 students from two Oakland high schools on November 2. The goal is to continue educating students about the career opportunities available in manufacturing and the important role it plays in our lives. Many students think of manufacturing as an old industry with no advanced technology. Advanced Manufacturing and Career Technical Education Day gives us the opportunity to showcase the role technology plays in our foundry today and hopefully inspire the next generation of manufacturers.
AB&I manufacturing ambassadors talked to the students about how they started their careers at AB&I, what they are doing now and why they like manufacturing. Environmental team member Mike Olvera talked about how he found his passion in the environment through an internship in high school. He discussed all the regulations he has to follow and stay up-to-date on and how he has to apply them by working collaboratively with engineering, maintenance, production and other departments to implement changes. Rich Watson, Jose Martinez, Jaime Miramontes, Alfredo Costa, Roberto Ramirez led tours for two groups of students, teachers and chaperones. Prior to the tours, Jennifer Grundell coordinated the necessary personal protective equipment (PPE), including head phones. AB&I also presented each student with a t-shirt that Jenny designed and a 4” cast iron skillet.
At the conclusion of the tour, the students went to Laney College for lunch and an introduction to the various manufacturing programs available at the college.
“I appreciate the partnership with AB&I and the willingness of the manufacturing Ambassadors and the team to share their experience and knowledge with the students,” said Emiliano Sanchez.
Allowing manufacturers an opportunity to open their doors and show, in a coordinated effort, what manufacturing is clears up many common misconceptions. By working together during and after the event, manufacturers can hopefully begin to address the skilled labor shortage they face, connect with future generations, take charge of the public image of manufacturing, and ensure the ongoing prosperity of the industry.
McWane team members are actively involved in the community in a variety of ways, like Manchester Tank Elkhart HR manager Kim McDowell. Kim recently sat on an Employability Skills Panel for area students to answer questions on what employers are looking for in their field of interest. Kim has also been working with the Elkhart Career Center to build education and training programs for specific positions that are a challenge to find qualified candidates such as maintenance and welders.
Approximately 1,000 students from 16 area high schools took part in the event that was attended by 90 area businesses. The event was featured in The Elkhart Truth in an article written by Blair Yankey.
Click here to read The Elkhart Truth article.