Students from the Cardinal Manufacturing team join Westminster Tool and Mantle in their booth at IMTS 2022.
In honor of National Manufacturing Month, Westminster Tool looks to young people across the country inspiring others to join the industry. One example of inspiration is the Cardinal Manufacturing Program at Eleva-Strum Central High School, a unique student-lead machine shop where high school students are using real business operations as professional experience.
Starting in 2005 the program began as an exploration of jobs, skills and operations needed in a job shop. After over ten years, the project has taken off. Students now work together designing, engineering and producing custom-made parts for the community, all while gaining class credit. This kind of collaborative, hands-on environment is exactly what drew some of Westminster Tool’s own team members to manufacturing.
Our team had the pleasure of meeting with some of this year’s Cardinal Manufacturing team at IMTS 2022 in Chicago, where we got to learn more about their current projects and explore new technology on the trade show floor. One of the highlights of our week was walking the show floor with the students exploring all of the latest developments in metal additive technology, or metal 3D printing. New technology like 3D printing has a major appeal for new students considering STEM careers for the first time, and it has a positive impact on changing the common misconceptions about the manufacturing industry as a whole.
By exposing students to the challenges and successes of industrial careers early on, more students are likely to see all of the advantages that this industry has to offer.
1. Communication Skills
One of the best advantages to technical learning like that taught at Eleva-Strum Central High School is key communication skills. This includes leading a project from start to finish, communicating effectively on challenges and hurdles, building a team of trust and collaboration.
2. Technical Skills
Students that are exposed to technical skills earlier on are gaining a major advantage in the job market after graduating. Some of the most high-demand skills in manufacturing today are already being taught at the high school level: blueprint reading, inspection, and quality control.
3. Professional Skills
Students in the Cardinal Manufacturing program gain unique hands-on experience to the professional world before ever applying for a job. Beyond soft skills and technical skills, on-the-job training offers valuable skills in project management, time management and lean concepts.
At Westminster Tool, our efforts to encourage others to join the manufacturing industry are rooted in bridging people and technology. Our company culture, at its foundation, is designed to support our team. That’s why we’ve invested so much into creating a positive, collaborative work environment with several opportunities for continuous learning and continuous improvement. We recognize that new technology is only as valuable as the people using it. We also recognize that company culture relies on giving employees the best possible tools out there. Together, our team and our technology makes up who we are as a company.
To learn more about career opportunities in manufacturing, check out some of the resources below:
Quinebaug Valley Community College – Advanced Manufacturing Certificate
Eastern CT’s Youth Manufacturing Pipeline Initiative
The Manufacturing Institute – Resources for Students
To apply to join the Westminster Tool team, click the button below.