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Manufacturing Day is Oct. 6

by | Oct 4, 2023 | Latest, news

Savage Precision Fabrication Sales Manager Kevin McEuen showed off parts his company builds for the F-16 fighter to Wylie ISD students last year. This year, MFD Day tours officially kick off Thursday and continue throughout the month. File art

Across the country, Manufacturing Day (MFG Day) is on the first Friday of October. But in Wylie, the annual event that inspires the next generation to make their careers in manufacturing will last a month.

A partnership between the Wylie Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), local manufacturers and the school district, Mayor Matthew Porter recognized Oct. 6 as MFG Day at the Sept. 26 council meeting. The local partnership is a nod to the national MFG Day initiative from the Manufacturing Institute. 

The month-long program of student and community tours, activities and events showcase the importance of local manufacturing by offering an inside look at local industry. It all begins with 9:30 a.m. Oct. 5 launch for students at the ag barn that includes Porter and Superintendent David Vinson. Businesses offering student tours on the launch include Tower Extrusions, Barco Pump, Avanti Windows & Doors, Sanden International USA, SAF Holland USA, Savage Precision Fabrication and CNC Innovations.

“The logo looks like an open door,” WEDC Executive Director Jason Greiner said. “The whole concept is to try to get manufacturers to open their doors to the public. This isn’t old manufacturing. These aren’t people wearing dirty clothes. That’s a misconception. A lot of people think these are probably low wage, low skill jobs and it’s the exact opposite. There are high-paying jobs right here in our community, which was founded on agriculture and manufacturing. This is about showing what manufacturing is today.”

WEDC hosted its first MFG Day for students in 2018.

“Getting the ISD and the industry to communicate and share information is what solidified this thing,” Greiner said. “It’s all hands on deck to retain these companies. It’s one thing to recruit new industries in town, but it’s a completely different thing to try to keep your industry where they are at and help them level up.”

Greiner hopes that all MFG Day tours will eventually be open to the public. “We hear all the time that people wonder what is in these facilities. They drive by them all the time, but they don’t know what they do.”

Angel Wygant, WEDC business retention and expansion director, says the program “goes to the heart of what’s happening with our workforce. We have an aging population and these hands-on skillsets are becoming very high tech. In the next 3 to 5 years there is going to be tremendous demand. It’s important to take the future workforce into these manufacturing facilities so they can see how their skillsets are being applied in a real-world environment.”

Tours throughout the month will focus on engineering, welding, robotics, compounding pharmacies, dental device manufactures, culinary arts businesses, construction and architecture. According to the WEDC, more than 100 students representing nine technical education disciplines will participate in industry tours for MFG Day this month.

“We address manufacturing from many different perspectives because manufacturing affects a lot of disciplines and industries,” Wygant said.

For more info and to register for Oct. 5 community tours from Barco Pump, Sanden International USA and Savage Precision Fabrication, visit wylieedc.com.

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