Manufacturing Day inspires children
By Alejandro Gonzales
LCC’s Center for Manufacturing Excellence (CME) hosted several groups of sixth graders on Friday, Oct. 5 for Manufacturing Day. The kids were treated to pizza and given a tour of some programs at LCC’s West Campus.
“The goal is to expose middle school and high school students to careers in education in manufacturing,” said Jennifer Fenning, an organizer of the event.
The middle schoolers participated in many hands-on activities throughout the tour. Throughout the building the groups learned to put together a small circuit board, use a virtual welding program and play with robot arms to move chess pieces around.
“Here in the Lansing area there are about 900 students who are touring different manufacturers such as Spartan Motors, GM, Emergent BioSolutions and LCC as well,” Fenning explained. “They are learning the opportunities that are available to them if they decide to join this sector.”
The students received information about how much they could earn in the growing industry and how their talents could be used.
“I think it was a great hands-on experience for the kids to learn more about all of the programs they offer here,” said Nicole Kuhn, a teacher from Sheridan Road School in Lansing.
The guides were able to move everyone from classroom environments to actual workplaces very efficiently. Groups also witnessed different types of machines that moved on their own, sorted objects and created parts.
“I liked it because we got to do a lot of cool stuff and make a lot of cool stuff,” said Jayden, a Sheridan Road student who experienced the event.
Manufacturing Day is a national event in the United States. The students learned about advanced positions that require specific education. According to an LCC press release, manufacturing is a growing and changing industry in Michigan and remains one of the state’s largest talent gaps.
LCC is preparing students to work in today’s manufacturing sector where many jobs pay upwards of $50,000, the press release stated.