MFG Day helps local students gain insight into manufacturing • Current Edition

More than 300 students got a taste of manufacturing on October 7 during MFG Day, which was designed to introduce related careers to the next generation of workers.

MFG Day, an initiative of The Manufacturing Institute and supported by the National Manufacturers Association, took place on October 7 and brought 315 students to INDEX Corporation in Noblesville, where the students were able to tour the facilities. The company is a machining manufacturer and employs 70 people in Noblesville, said John Huntzer, marketing coordinator at INDEX Corporation.

About 65 students from Creekside Middle School in Carmel, Hamilton Heights Middle School in Arcadia, and Legacy Christian School in Noblesville visited Conner Prairie to learn about the history of manufacturing and then toured the INDEX Company, where students visited various stations to learn about the use of technology, robots, and cobots in advanced manufacturing environments.

“This is a great example of the innovative approach the Pursuit Institute takes to vocational and technical education. Centered on collaboration with Conner Prairie, INDEX, Helmer Scientific, RZ Automation and Schafer, we are engaging middle school students from across Hamilton County in a truly unique experience centered around advanced manufacturing and innovation,” said Kyle Marshall. , deputy director of the Pursuit Institute.

In addition to students from the Pursuit Institute, formerly the Hamilton County Center for Career Achievement, the INDEX Corporation hosted 250 students from Noblesville High School, KIPP Indy Public Schools, Vincennes University and Aviation Institute of Maintenance. Cris Taylor, President and CEO of INDEX Corporation, said exposing students to the world of manufacturing is one of his passions.

Taylor said he wanted students to know that manufacturing is not dirty, smelly work and high tech.

“It’s become an incredibly interesting career,” Taylor said, noting that individuals can earn high salaries.

On average, there are about 800,000 jobs open per month in manufacturing nationwide, with the average annual income of US manufacturing employees in 2020 being $92,832, according to the National Association of Manufacturers. There were 834,000 job openings in July, according to NAM.

Branden Reinert, materials specialist at INDEX Corporation, was among employees discussing his role in the company as students toured stations around the facility. Reinert has worked at INDEX Corporation for about 10 years and said making the facility available to students has given them the opportunity to see what manufacturing is all about.

“You kind of have an idea of ​​the things that are going on,” Reinert said. “That’s what keeps everything going. Manufacturing is what makes the parts for everything.

Taylor also said it was important to get young people interested in manufacturing as a possible career, especially as people continue to retire. He added that students don’t necessarily need a college degree to get into manufacturing, noting that he didn’t have a college education and eventually ended up becoming president and chief executive officer. direction of INDEX.

Taylor offered advice to people considering a career in manufacturing and encouraged them to explore different companies and what they have to offer.

“See what alternative careers you can do to get into manufacturing,” he said.