MAC Hosts Manufacturing Day for 8th-Graders
Mineral Area College, Southeast Missouri Workforce Development Board and various community and economic organizations held a manufacturing expo for regional 8th graders on Oct. 6, 2017, in the North College Center on the Park Hills campus. Manufacturing Day is a national event sponsored by several national manufacturing entities.
Workforce Development Director Bev Hickam, who oversaw the event, said this is the second year the college has put on the expo which invites regional manufacturers to provide interactive exhibits for pre-high school students and discuss manufacturing career pathways.
“In the spring, eighth-graders choose their high school classes based on their career aspirations. Manufacturing Day provides information about technical positions related to engineering, robotics, mechanics, fluid power, etc. Many students are unaware of the opportunities in the manufacturing arena.”
Participating school districts were Farmington, Bismarck, Ste. Genevieve, Fredericktown, Perry County, Valle Ste. Gen, North County, and Central. Manufacturers included Botkin Lumber, Filtration System Products, Holcim (US), Mississippi Lime and Piramal Glass.
Farmington-located Botkin, which manufactures shipping containers, boxes, crates, and pallets for products shipped all over the U.S. as well as around the world, demonstrated steps involved in making non-standard sized pallets to meet the needs of industrial manufacturing customers who need to ship products.
Filtration System Products, Inc., of Fredericktown, produces a variety of industrial filters, so they showed students different types of filtration products such as filter bags for dry and wet application. Fire-safe products and syrup filters were also exhibited, and a demonstration on assembling parts and how bags fit in cages was shown.
Representatives from Bloomsdale’s Holcim (US) showed students the materials used in the manufacturing of cement, and also touched on safety and the necessary safety equipment worn by employees.
Mississippi Lime Company, Ste.Genevieve, brought their diorama replica of a mine, a mock-up of a rotary kiln, and stone and product samples. A water treatment demonstration was included, and they also arranged for CAT of Peoria, Illinois, to bring down their heavy-machinery, mobile simulator so kids could practice.
Piramal Glass - USA, Park Hills, provides packaging solutions for perfumery and pharmaceuticals and displayed a mold set used for forming glass bottles, and demonstrated how to put a mold together.
Several activities for the students were also offered. As part of manufacturing career exploration, they got to watch a 22-minute film on what goes on behind closed doors at a manufacturing facility and then research opportunities that abound in manufacturing. They were also able to assemble mini-robots out of toothbrushes, batteries and pipe cleaners which could then race and jump around. The principles of rigging and basic skills needed for everyday rigging operation were demonstrated. Students were also introduced to the concepts of hydraulics and pneumatics and their relevance in a variety of industries as they shot a foam-ball air cannon at a target. Finally, students got to try out the various machine stations in MAC’s Advanced Manufacturing Lab.
For more information on 2018’s Manufacturing Expo, contact Hickam at (573) 518-2182 or firstname.lastname@example.org.