OLDSMAR – If you can dream it, you can do it.
That’s the message Jerry Custin, secretary of the Upper Tampa Bay Manufacturers Association, is passing on.
“Folks generally do not realize the strength of manufacturing in our region and the level of education in our area schools,” Custin said.
The Bay Area Manufacturers Association and the Upper Tampa Bay Manufacturers Association are teaming up for the Dream It, Do It initiative. Partnering with Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas county schools on the Adopt-A-School program, the manufacturers associations are working together to mentor students. The goal is to expose students and parents to career paths in advanced manufacturing. The mentorship that the program provides involves engineering programs as well as potential internships and employment opportunities.
“We have established working relationships with the Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas (County) school districts to get our manufacturers involved in the development of these programs and to engage students in the exciting world of advanced manufacturing,” said Custin.
Gaither High School is one of the schools that will be mainly involved with the establishment of the program, Custin said. The schools will involve state-of-the-art 3D printers and devices such as miniature wind tunnels to provide students with an advantage they usually don’t get.
“Nearly 25 percent of Florida’s 17,000 manufacturers are in the Bay area and they employ more than 57,000 workers at an average pay up to 20 percent greater than the service industries,” said Custin. “Our schools are focusing on science, technology, engineering, and math at some level. It’s an exciting program.”
For more on the Dream It, Do It initiative, call (813) 855-4233.