FMA: STEM initiatives prepare students for post-secondary opportunities

The Fabricators & Manufacturers Association Intl. (FMA) is helping a suburban Chicago high school implement a STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) curriculum.


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The Fabricators & Manufacturers Association Intl. (FMA) is helping a suburban Chicago high school implement a STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) curriculum. STEM incorporates all disciplines including the arts, languages, and humanities alongside a focus on career certifications, college partnerships, and technology to prepare students for post secondary opportunities.

College of DuPage is among FMA

College of DuPage is among FMA's Certified Education Centers.

Jim Warren, director of education for the FMA, and manufacturers, community organizations and school representatives participate in an open house ceremony today at Wheeling High School, in Wheeling, IL.

Warren will discuss the association's programs to support manufacturers and to inspire our next generation of inventors and manufacturers. Warren also will share the results of a recent national survey by FMA and its Foundation - Nuts, Bolts & Thingamajigs - that shows why we have a pending skilled labor crisis emerging in U.S. manufacturing.

"STEM provides skill-based learning opportunities for students interested in becoming our next generation's leaders in design innovation and advanced manufacturing," said Warren. "We are proud to support Wheeling High School's transition to STEM and hope more local youth will be encouraged to consider a career in the vocational trades."

Next year, Wheeling will offer classes that most high schools don't, including metal working, computer engineering and architectural design. Students also can achieve certification as a nursing assistant and work in a special engineering and architectural lab complete with a 3D printer, CNC lathes and mills, robotics workstation and more. Wheeling High School teamed with local industry and manufacturers to construct the state of the art prototyping fabrication lab.

"The new lab provides students interested in engineering, architecture, and advanced manufacturing with hands on design experience, industry certifications, and college credit articulation," adds Warren.

Joining Warren at the open house event are Dan Swinney, executive director of the Chicago Manufacturing Renaissance Council (CMRC), Peter Vadopalas, director of economic development for the Village of Wheeling, and Lazaro Lopez, principal of Wheeling High School, among others.

- Edited by Mark T. Hoske, editor in chief, Control Engineering ,


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