In celebration of Manufacturing Day 2016, ATAS International, Inc. recently opened their doors to area students. Schools that were represented include: Lehigh Career and Technical Institute, Schnecksville; Sacred Heart School, Allentown; Parkland School District, Allentown; and Career Institute of Technology, Easton.
This program was designed to expand knowledge of manufacturing and improve public perception of today’s manufacturing career opportunities. Students were able to tour the ATAS facility to experience first-hand the processes in which metal components for the building envelope are manufactured. They also viewed a panel discussion consisting of several ATAS employees, who spoke about their positions in departments that include production, marketing, sales, technical services and human resources. Students learned that every person within a manufacturing company must work together to produce a quality product and provide exemplary service to their customers.
Manufacturing Day is an annual national event executed at the local level supported by thousands of manufacturers as they host students, teachers, parents, job seekers and other local community members at open houses, plant tours and presentations designed to showcase modern manufacturing technology and careers. Studies show that almost 80 percent of Americans believe manufacturing is important to our economic prosperity, standard of living and national security. Yet only 30 percent of those surveyed would encourage their children to go into manufacturing careers. This is a trend that must be reversed and which Manufacturing Day seeks to address by giving more people an opportunity to discover what modern manufacturing environments are really like.
“There is an increasing demand for highly skilled professionals in the manufacturing sector who can design, program and operate technology,” said Jim Bus, executive vice president of ATAS International. “The average age of a manufacturing employee is 56, and between now and 2020 there will be an unprecedented shortage of skilled workers who will need to be replaced.”
Manufacturing Day is co-produced by the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, International (FMA), the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), the Manufacturing Institute (MI), and the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP). Partners include Edge Factor and the Science Channel and guest producer, Industrial Strength Marketing.
Photo: ATAS employees participating in panel discussion, shown from left to right: Jim Bus, Chris Dybach, Danielle Biggs, Mike Gianfrancesco, Allison Guzley, Dylan Repsher, Kevin Klersy and Ed Webb.