Students Visit BIG Kaiser to Learn about Advanced Manufacturing, Career Pathways

Here in the western suburbs of Chicago we are part of one of the highest concentration of manufacturing activity in the country, employing a staggering 85,000. So numerous and busy are the factories and research centers along the stretch of I-90 shooting out of Chicago that it’s become known as the Golden Corridor.

We here at BIG Kaiser recognize our responsibility to give back both to this community and to help foster the next generation of advanced manufacturing and technology workers. That’s why we put competition aside and join with like-minded local companies to sponsor the Golden Corridor Advanced Manufacturing Partnership, aka GCAMP. GCAMP is a non-profit dedicated to educating students of all levels about the opportunities in the field and facilitating potential internship or employment connections.

Last week, we opened our facility to host GCAMP’s Student Open House. In addition to the goals mentioned above, the event is designed to debunk some of the myths held by students and parents about modern manufacturing. As we in the business know, the days of dirty, dangerous, and unregulated factories are long gone.

Seventy five students along with their parents packed our training room to hear short, inspirational stories and testimonials from various BIG Kaiser employees, local distributor Machinery Tooling & Supply, cutting tool manufacturer Mitsubishi Materials, and industry association AMT about their areas of specialty and the paths available. Guests also explored our expansive showroom with the guidance of our experts.

The students also got a kick out of the opportunity to see first-hand two of manufacturing’s biggest breakthroughs of late—the world’s first 3-D printed vehicle – the “Strati”, unveiled at last year’s IMTS, and the first ever open-source production vehicle – Local Motors’ Rally Fighter.

“Considering the well-documented shortage of workers in our field, organizations like GCAMP are critical to the future of our business and for that matter our country,” said Chris Kaiser, President & CEO, BIG Kaiser. “We are happy to be able to help with this event every year and have a lot of fun with it. Watching the kids learn and seeing their enthusiasm is the real reward for us. They’re the real stars.”