Beyond Talking: Seeing is Believing

This year the AMBA Chicago Chapter will be hold two symposiums promoting careers in advanced manufacturing, but this time teachers, career counselors and superintendents will have the opportunity to see advanced manufacturing in action.


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Last October the American Mold Builders Association’s Chicago Chapter hosted more than 30 educators from 17 area junior high and high schools at its first Education Symposium to enlighten them about advanced manufacturing and the career opportunities that exist for their students. Many of the educators said their eyes had been opened a little wider that evening.

This year two symposiums will be held. The first will be held on Tuesday, September 27, and the second on Tuesday, October 18, but this time teachers, career counselors and superintendents will have the opportunity to see advanced manufacturing in action.

The September symposium will be held at Industrial Molds Group in Rockford, Illinois, where attendees will get an eyeful of some of the latest machines and technologies used in manufacturing molds. A similar experience will take place for attendees of the October symposium as the Chicago AMBA will host it at the Technology and Manufacturing Association in Schaumburg, Illinois, where a great many moldmaking apprentices learn the skills that make them valued employees in our industry. The TMA’s training curriculum includes a related theory apprentice training program that has been recognized as one of the largest precision metalworking apprenticeship programs in the United States. In addition, TMA features hands-on learning in its state-of-the-art CNC training lab. Educators will see, up close, how apprentices are learning valuable skills for rewarding careers.

“As we began planning our 2016 symposium, we discussed ways in which we could reach more educators in Illinois,” AMBA Chicago President Francine Petrucci says. “We wanted to increase attendance at the symposium in October, and we knew that in Rockford there are many moldmaking and moldmaking-related companies. But Rockford is located about 80 miles outside of Chicago and educators from that area probably would not want to drive all that way on a school night. So we decided to bring a second symposium to them and asked Industrial Molds if they might host our event. Fortunately, they said yes and we’re very excited about it.”

Chicago AMBA is always looking for mold industry folks who might be involved on some level with a local junior high or high school (perhaps you have a child who is currently a student at that level?) and can help spread the word about these symposiums. If you do know a Chicago-area educator who might be interested, contact Chapter Coordinator Karen Norville via email at ambachicagochapter@comcast.net. The chapter is also available to speak or participate in other ways at any career-related events in the region.