An array of manufacturing processes and products were on display for students from Jamestown Community College and area high schools during the Industrial Possibilities and Opportunities Day (IPOD) on October 26.
Sponsored by the Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier, the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce, and JCC, the event was part of the "Dream It! Do It!" initiative, a campaign conceived by the National Association of Manufacturers to help modern manufacturers attract employees with the right mix of skills and education.
"Thirty area manufacturers set up displays and shared information to help students understand that not only are there diverse jobs available in manufacturing, those jobs pay well," said Dave Johnson, director of industrial services for the Chamber and MAST.
Marty Siddall of Lincoln Electric guides a visiting student through a virtual welding process.
"Too many people hang on to the belief that manufacturing involves dirty jobs that don't pay family-sustaining wages," said Johnson. "The reality is that technology has transformed manufacturing so that today's jobs involve mind power more than muscle and offer terrific opportunities to support a comfortable lifestyle for those who are educated and trained.
"We also want these students to understand that there is more to manufacturing than running a machine and how important science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education is to manufacturing," he added. "We want to drive home the message that these jobs exist right here in Chautauqua County."
Students from 18 Chautauqua County school districts met with representatives from Advanced Manufacturing, Anderson Precision, Blackstone NEY, Bush Industries, CMFS, Cott Beverage, Cummins Engine, Dahlstrom Rollform, Dawson Metal, Excelco, Fancher Chair, Hanson Sign, Heidenhain, Insyte Consulting, Jamestown Container, Jamestown Board of Public Utilities, Jamestown Mattress, Matco Tools, Nestle Purina, Power Drives, Rand Machine, Ring Precision, Sandberg Kessler, Serta Mattress, SKF, Titan X, Truck-Lite, Ulrich Planfiling, Weber-Knapp, and Welders Supply.
Students also had the chance to experience the welding process through a virtual welder provided by Lincoln Electric and Welders Supply.
Based on student engagement with the manufacturers, iPads were awarded through a drawing to five students who participated in the event: Justin Whalen and Ryan Boughton from Maple Grove Central School, Clarke Wiltsie from Frewsburg Central School, Hannah Hall-Gross from Pine Valley Central School, and Edward Merwick from Jamestown High School.