Opening the Doors to Students on Manufacturing Day: A Community Effort
A beautiful fall day, Saturday October 5th, brought absolutely perfect weather as a backdrop for our first ever MFG Day open house. MFG Day is a nationwide event that encourages manufacturing companies of all kinds to open their doors to students, parents, teachers, and community leaders.
These events aim to create an opportunity to introduce young people to manufacturing, some who might otherwise never have the chance to see the inside of a manufacturing plant. Asi Carmeli, Hobson & Motzer’s Director of Human Resources said, “Students have real career options and opportunities in our industry. The only way to put that into perspective is to bring them in, talk to them, and show them.” He further explained, “I think it is fair to say that manufacturing has been battling a perception war for some time now that isn’t always flattering! We want to do our part to change that.”
A New Generation of Factories
Modern factories are clean, safe, and full of amazing technology—they are also full of amazing opportunities. As high-school-aged men and women consider their futures, we, as an industry, have an obligation to make sure students and their parents are aware of the potential that exist in manufacturing. By working locally, with municipal leaders, school systems, and public officials we can ensure our country has the skilled labor force it needs to lead manufacturing in America into the next century. This is why Hobson & Motzer was motivated to host a big MFG Day event—and what an event it was!
MFG Day Highlights
There were a host of activities planned for our MFG Day, including a general plant tour that offered a very good overview of our operations. Visitors also had direct access to Hobson & Motzer team members representing a wide range of skilled roles within our company: metal stamping, precision CNC machining, robotic automation, quality control & inspection, engineering, tool making, and technical services. The level of engagement was high, with great questions from students and parents alike. Students interested in a specific role, such as CNC machining or robotic automation, and others, were given an exclusive opportunity to have a more in-depth tour in these areas of Hobson & Motzer. The small group setting made for a comfortable, engaging, question-and-answer session about what a job in the field is like. “The students in the focus tours were impressive, they asked a lot of great questions,” said Bill Macri, veteran tool maker and manager of Hobson & Motzer’s 50-person tool room.
Outside of the plant was an expo-style experience that included several table-top displays, including Middlesex Community College and Goodwin College, who were there to speak with students and parents about the programs offered at each school. Each school offers curriculum options that can prepare a student for the kinds of roles and opportunities in a company like Hobson & Motzer. They also shared their perspective on the demand outlook for skilled workers in the U.S. in the future—which is beyond positive!
Workforce Alliance and Wallingford Hubcap also manned tables, lending their support and guidance to our guests. These are two great local organizations that work to bring business, education, and community together. Topping off the expo, however, was the incredible Goodwin College Mobile Manufacturing Lab, a 48-foot mobile classroom that is loaded with advanced manufacturing technology, which offers an impressive look at the kind of learning students are in for—advanced manufacturing at its best. It was a big hit with everyone.
Several State Representatives and public officials also made time to attend, including Mayor Dickinson, of Wallingford and representatives from Economic Development Commissions from both Durham and Wallingford, CT, where we operate. We were pleased to have Dr. Salvatore Menzo, Superintendent of Wallingford Public Schools, attend MFG Day. Menzo is a recognized STEM leader whose team has done great work in the Wallingford School District to foster a unique relationship between manufacturers and educators. On attending our event, Menzo commented, “This relationship has several layers of benefit for the entire community. First and foremost, students are benefiting from the access to Hobson & Motzer to gain a deeper understanding of career options in advanced manufacturing. Second, the school district personnel is grateful for the expertise that is shared by Hobson & Motzer professionals to help bolster programming and the relevance of instruction in manufacturing and engineering in our schools. Lastly, the business community is growing its future workforce through our pipeline programming.”
Grateful to Open Minds
A small army of Hobson & Motzer volunteers from both our Durham and Wallingford, CT plants graciously hosted our visitors for this invitation only event, more than 200 in all. We had upwards of 75 students, along with many of their parents and teachers. All in all, we were humbled by the response and support from our community. It was a great day—one that we are proud of. The national tagline for MFG Day is “Open Doors, Open Minds.” Reflecting on a great Saturday afternoon in Durham, we believe we did just that.
Why We Do It
It’s important to us to support vocational and STEM related initiatives. Keeping the next generation engaged and motivated to excel is part of the innate blueprint at Hobson & Motzer, and hosting student visits is a natural extension of this vision.
Interested in a successful collaboration for your next precision manufacturing need? Contact us now! We’d love to find out how we can help.