TRAVERSE CITY — Format adjustments altered northwestern Michigan Manufacturing Day.
For the employers that hosted firm excursions Friday, it’s not in regards to the quantity of highschool college students going by the manufacturing pipeline. It’s the actual fact there’s nonetheless a functioning conduit to offer inspiration and publicity to what space companies produce.
COVID pressured the 2020 Manufacturing Day to turn out to be a digital occasion, giving greater than 1,000 space college students a glimpse of producing alternatives all through the area by way of video to the classroom over a number of days in October.
The subsequent annual occasion was moved from the primary Friday in October 2021 to the primary Friday in February 2022. And as an alternative of a whole bunch of scholars visiting the area’s producers through the faculty day, Friday’s occasion started at 4:30 p.m., a half hour earlier than the everyday work week ends.
However producers nonetheless realized the significance of the message and the occasion, even with attendance reduce dramatically.
“It’s protecting the pipeline rolling, even when it’s a trickle,” stated Don Howe, chair of the Grand Traverse Space Manufacturing Council and the vice chairman of Century Specialties, a division of Century, LLC. “When the temperature is freezing, you retain the water operating a trickle so the pipes don’t freeze. It’s sort of that thought course of.
“We’ve got to maintain the momentum and preserve youngsters engaged in manufacturing.”
Howe praised the work of Manufacturing Day Chair Lindsay Hartsock together with previous chair and GTAMC board member Lisa Baker-Lorincz with delivering a Manufacturing Day in some type after months of conferences and discussions.
“We didn’t do it final yr due to all the craziness,” Howe stated. “We sat down and stated, ‘Hear. We’ve got to determine a strategy to keep engaged.’ We had a Plan A and a Plan B. Plan A was in-person, how we often do it. This was sort of the perfect hybrid choice.”
“With COVID-19 canceling the prior-year Manufacturing Day excursions, Britten wished to take part it doesn’t matter what the occasion regarded like,” Recruitment, Payroll and Advantages Supervisor Danielle Willson stated in an electronic mail.
One of many greatest adjustments to Manufacturing Day was that college students needed to sign-up for spots prematurely of the occasion and organize their very own transportation. Each might present the additional benefit of delivering the message to a broader, extra engaged viewers.
“It additionally affords us a greater alternative as a result of the youngsters can include their dad and mom,” Howe stated. “Mother and father are an enormous influencer of the youngsters.”
Along with educating the group about merchandise made within the area, Manufacturing Day’s different mission is informing the general public about all kinds of trade jobs obtainable.
Like many of the area, employers are searching for assist, and manufacturing is not any completely different.
That’s one of many the reason why Frankfort Manufacturing hosted a Friday tour with simply two college students signed up for 2 whole time slots.
“I’m attempting to get our identify on the market, get folks and rent some youngsters — or adults,” Frankfort Manufacturing Normal Supervisor Tom Charters stated. “We’re attempting to get our names out within the colleges.”
Charters stated the enterprise at the moment has a workers of 31 and he’s seeking to rent 9 as quickly as doable. He stated open positions embody CNC and lathe mill operators, but additionally machine meeting, high quality engineers, service and electrical technicians.
Howe stated Century, LLC is seeking to rent 9 folks to affix its present workers of 142. Howe stated there’s additionally a wide-range of positions open and the roles are “a vacation spot, not a fallback.”
Britten additionally has a lot of open positions to fill, at the moment about 24 for a corporation that averages 225 workers.
“MFG Day is a approach to herald college students — and this yr their dad and mom as properly — to showcase the a number of profession paths that Britten has to supply, comparable to welding, woodworking, 3-D foam sculpting, gross sales, engineering, in addition to print manufacturing,” Willson stated in an electronic mail.