Students tour world of manufacturing

Working with the amazing robotic arm at Enterprise Tool and die are Nathan Maas, Kamrin Van’t Hof, Alaina Izenbart and Addison Rapa
Zach Miller sees the game side of engineering

Designed to inspire students about career opportunities they might not know about – and ones that would save them money in college tuition costs – seventh-grade students from Caledonia’s Kraft Meadows Middle School checked out West Michigan manufacturers recently as part of a national Discovering Manufacturing week.

Sierra Tague examines a car body that a press put out

Touring several local plants, they learned manufacturing isn’t what it used to be. Workers talked about how their jobs were a bit like working with Legos and rife with challenges every day. Several students said what they saw looked interesting and opened their eyes to different careers.

“I thought it was cool they could make so much stuff from one machine and interesting how many people it takes to do one or two parts,” said student Alyssa Burch. Teachers said they never had such tours when they were in seventh grade and commented that if they had known about all the opportunities, it might just have affected their own career choices.

Linda Odette
Linda Odette is a freelance writer and editor with more than 30 years of experience in journalism. She’s worked primarily as an editor in feature departments at newspapers in West Michigan, including the Grand Rapids Press, the Muskegon Chronicle and the Holland Sentinel. She lives in East Grand Rapids near the Eastown edge, has a teenage son and a daughter in college. Read Linda's full bio

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