As part of the continuing effort to bring attention to the manufacturing industry as a viable career option for today’s youth, Barry Butters, Director of Education and Training, and other representatives from Precision Plus Inc. have been traveling to Wisconsin area high schools and technical colleges.
On November 1st, Butters spent the day at Burlington High School’s Career Day Fair. The event allowed students to gather information from the booths of various prospective employers from a wide array of industries.
Butters then traveled three and a half hours to Eleva Strum High School on November 7th. Technology Education teacher Craig Cegielski, has developed an operational manufacturing company run by the students within the school. The Eleva Strum staff, students and community were filled with pride about what their program has accomplished to date. Cegielski’s outstanding efforts bring real-life manufacturing experiences into his classroom.
Butters and Production Supervisor Charles Lankford, traveled to Blackhawk Technical College in Janesville on November 19th. They took a tour of the CNC Machine Program facility and met with CNC Technician Instructor Rich Grossen. The entire manufacturing program at Blackhawk will be moving to a new facility in nearby Milton in the near future. The Advanced Manufacturing Training Center at Milton will result in larger capabilities for the program.
On November 26th, both Barry Butters and Mike Reader, President of Precision Plus, traveled to Richmond-Burton High School to speak to an “Introduction to Business” class about the manufacturing industry. Mike shared the challenges of running a manufacturing business in the current economy, and Barry focused his remarks on employability skills.
Subsequently, Butters traveled to East Troy High School on December 1st to speak to Mark Beilman’s “Introduction to Engineering” class about the manufacturing industry and specifically what is manufactured at Precision Plus Inc. East Troy is a first-year Project Lead the Way (or PLTW) school with just one-course offering. Beilman shared that East Troy High School plans to add an additional PLTW course each year. Precision Plus Inc. is a big supporter of the PLTW Program, which follows the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Initiative to promote the field of engineering. The PLTW curriculum strives to provide experiences to stimulate interest in the manufacturing industry.
Reader and Butters attended the State Project Lead the Way Conference in Pewaukee on December 9th, for which Precision Plus is a “Friend of STEM” donor. At the conference, Wisconsin’s Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch addressed the state’s PLTW teachers, where she acknowledged the skills gap that companies, such as Precision Plus, are facing. It was encouraging to see the sheer number of high school educators working in conjunction with the PLTW program through the Milwaukee School of Engineering to stimulate interest in the youth of Wisconsin toward this field.
On January 7th, Precision Plus representatives, President Mike Reader, Director of Sales and Engineering William Wells, Production Supervisor Tom Lankford, Director of Education, and Barry Butters, Director of Education and Training, traveled with Elkhorn’s District Administrator Jason Tadlock and Assistant Principal Dan Kiel to tour Beloit Memorial High School’s Technical Education facility. What has been accomplished at this facility in a short period of time is remarkable. Steve McNeal, Beloit’s District Administrator, said it was truly a partnership between the school and local industry leaders. Beloit Memorial High School has also hired Ryan Rewey to be the Technology Education Coordinator to ensure the program’s success.
Butters again traveled back to Beloit Memorial High School to speak to PLTW teacher Tammy Spoerk’s classes on January 10th. Butters message centered on the potential for a great career in the manufacturing industry and specifically, what is manufactured at Precision Plus
Butters went back to East Troy High School to speak at their Career Day on January 14th. He and fellow manufacturer Jerry Heckel from Heckel Tool & Manufacturing Corporation gave a presentation to 40 students on the skill-set needed to join the manufacturing industry, including problem-solving skills, a significant background in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, as well as experience in traditional metals classes.
Butters plans to visit Delavan-Darien High School and Woodstock High School in the near future. Mike Reader is committed to the cause of re-introducing the manufacturing industry to the next generation of professionals, dispelling the misconception that manufacturing is a dirty and dangerous profession. Precision Plus Inc. invites any individual or group interested in learning more about the manufacturing industry to their facility for an informational tour. Furthermore, Barry Butters and Mike Reader will travel to speak to any group interested in learning about the manufacturing industry. Feel free to contact them with any requests at 262.743.1700 or via email: Barry Butters – Mike Reader.