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Bots IQ Celebrates a Successful Manufacturing Month

December 11, 2023

This is a guest blog post from ARM Endorsed Training Provider Southwest PA BotsIQ

Manufacturing month is a nationwide celebration of the industry, which also serves as an opportunity to inspire the students of today to become the manufacturers of tomorrow. The Pittsburgh Chapter NTMA’s youth workforce development program, BotsIQ, took advantage of this month to partner with 21 southwestern Pennsylvania manufacturers to show middle and high school students what a career in the industry looks like.

From the company perspective, these outreach efforts address the growing need to train future generations of manufacturers. As Rebecca Dalton, Vice President of Finance at MetPlas explains, “After Covid showed the United States that the self-sufficiency of American manufacturing is important, the industry is growing very quickly. There are more positions opening than ever before.” Michael Spena, Engineering Director at FS-Elliot, believes in the positive impact these events can have, saying “We at FS-Elliott participate in the NTMA/BotsIQ MFG Day tours to help high school students in our communities get exposure to careers in manufacturing, engineering, and design. We know that seeing these professions in action can help the students decide on their career paths.”

Over the course of the month, BotsIQ recruited 52 educators across 30 schools to join in on manufacturing month events, offering this opportunity to celebrate the manufacturing industry to an unprecedented number of students. In all, 370 students participated in the celebrations for Manufacturing Month, up from 169 last year, more than doubling the number of potential future professionals who connected positively to the industry. Out of 178 students surveyed at the end of their MFG day event, 92% felt that the event positively impacted their impression of the manufacturing industry. According to the students, they saw BotsIQ’s tours as a chance to “broaden their knowledge” and understand more about the world by taking advantage of “an experience they would never get sitting in a classroom.” They mentioned enjoying learning about practically every aspect of the industry, from the capabilities of different machines to the history of the American manufacturing industry. Some students reported that they even enjoyed learning about safety, documentation, and other less outwardly glamorous aspects of the industry. This kind of interest is a great sign for an industry on the rise and in need of new professionals.

The teachers connecting their schools to these opportunities had a lot to say as well. Darcy Holtzman, a teacher at Burrell High School, wants to show her students “the new manufacturing industry,” and “share her passion for manufacturing” through programs like BotsIQ. Michael Steeber, of Frazier High School, added that “BotsIQ tours have provided Frazier students a motivational and eye-opening experience. They get to see what they do in the modern-day high school technology and engineering classroom being used to solve real problems by people in high paying jobs.”

In all, this year’s Manufacturing Month celebrations were a resounding success. The students left feeling inspired, the teachers had a chance to give an exciting experience to their students different from their normal curriculum, and the participating manufacturers laid the groundwork to connect with the workforce of the future all while sharing their passion for manufacturing with students ready to be inspired. The future of the industry is looking bright.

ARM Endorsement

With so many robotics training listed on, how does a student identify which program will best prepare them for their career in robotics? The ARM Endorsement badge helps showcase which programs, like this one from Bots IQ, have been proven to provide state-of-the-art curriculum and real-life skills for success post-graduation. 

These programs have passed a rigorous evaluation process completed by subject matter experts and continue to be reevaluated. Learn more here!

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