Gearing up for Upper Valley Manufacturing Week
SPRINGFIELD — National Manufacturing Day, a celebration of modern manufacturing meant to inspire the next generation of manufacturers, is coming soon to the Upper Valley. The River Valley Technical Center is gearing up with the American Precision Museum and manufacturers throughout the region for the annual Upper Valley Manufacturing Week, Oct. 10 to Oct. 14. The collaborative effort is a way to bridge education, business and industry together to help fill the nearly 7,000 manufacturing jobs in the region. Workforce development programs match students from the River Valley Tech Center and area high school and middle school students with employers for a day of exploration. Students and educators tour facilities, have job shadow and workplace learning experience opportunities.
For Lakota Blaisdell, workplace learning is how he is filling out his senior year. He's a level II Advanced Manufacturing student at the River Valley Technical Center and a senior at Windsor High School. RVTC offers co-operative education, which means Lakota is spending half his school days working for North Hartland Tool in North Hartland. He said manufacturing work is a good challenge for him. "When I was introduced to manufacturing at RVTC, it changed my life, kept me out of trouble. I've worked in grinding, but like cutting. It's a good trade and a way to earn a lot of money," said Blaisdell. He describes himself as a go-getter who is interested in the learning all he can about CNC machining. Blaisdell is planning to continue with North Hartland Tool and enter their apprenticeship program, offered in conjunction with Vermont Technical College. He was also intern at the American Precision Museum last summer.
Participants in the Upper Valley Manufacturing Week include: River Valley Technical Center, River Valley Workforce Investment Baord, Springfield Regional Development, Hartford Area Career and Technology Center, New Hampshire Manufacturing Extension Partnership, and Upper Valley Business Education Partnership. Business and Industry partners include: Chamberlain Machine Inc. Chroma, Concepts NREC, Hypertherm, Jamaica Cottage Shop, North Hartland Tool, Strum, Ruger & Company, Timken, Vermed, Vermod and Whelen Engineering.
For information on participation in this event, call the American Precision Museum at (802) 674-5278.