Florida’s Manufacturers & Educators Receive Special Recognition at the 7th Annual Manufacturers Summit

Educators and manufacturers have long played a role in building a strong manufacturing base in Florida. Their cohesive efforts in laying the ground-work for innovation have secured Florida as a high-tech hot spot in the national arena. FLATE acknowledges the relentless contributions of educators and industry, and bestowed special honors to three individuals for their commitment in promoting, educating and training a high-tech workforce in Florida. Awardees were recognized during the President’s Awards Dinner at the 7th Annual Manufacturers Association of Florida Manufacturers Summit in Orlando, FL., held Nov. 3 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Orlando, FL.

Dave Lintner
Dave Lintner was named Manufacturing Secondary Educator-of-the-Year. Lintner who is an industrial education and technology teacher at Ridge Community High School in Davenport, FL is a former engineer who has taught industrial technology in Michigan and Florida for over three decades. He brings insider’s knowledge of having worked in various segments of manufacturing into the classroom and says “integrating that valuable experience into teaching has been very important as well as a real plus with all the various projects his students have completed over the years.”

Lintner’s ability to support global professional needs through local student skills set development has also lead to the production of a number of projects that range from automated hydroponics, ergonomic workstations, smart home technology, automated can crushers, to solar panels, hovercrafts, automated drawbridges, steam- powered catapults, and Maglev Trains. He played a leading role in establishing the engineering technology academy at Ridge HS. The academy introduces students to engineering and technology concepts in manufacturing, electronics, robotics, computer integrated manufacturing, and energy. His teaching lab that he opened in 2006 is frequented by visitors from across the state, and serves as a model for other schools to emulate. The future he says looks bright for the program as students engage in team projects that give a real-world view of manufacturing operations, and gives them an opportunity to learn various areas of technology and engineering.

Dean Eavey at the MAF Summit
On the post-secondary level, Dean Eavey, associate professor of business and technology division and program manager for electronics engineering technology and computer integration manufacturing (CIM) at Gulf Coast Community College (GCCC) in Panama City will receive the Manufacturing Post-Secondary Educator-of-the-Year Award. Eavey who has served in this capacity for the past ten years is part of a $500,000 grant from the Department of Labor geared to promote manufacturing training in Florida. His driving force lies in preparing students to enter the field of high-tech manufacturing and witness them succeed. This he says helps them pursue rewarding careers and helps the country remain globally competitive.

Outside his role as an educator, Eavey serves as an industrial trainer and examiner for Toyota in southern Indiana, and spends his summers teaching apprentice classes on a part-time basis for General Motors and Johnsons Controls. Over the course of years, Eavey has enabled technicians to gain skills in electronics, programmable logic controllers, fluid power, robotics, motor controls, and industrial computers, and has promoted distribution of mobile laboratory kits containing the latest in automation and robotics hardware and software, as well as online and workplace state-of-the-art-training facilities. He was a past member of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers, and played a key role in developing the first national model for CIM programs in the early 80s. His efforts to create innovative instructional materials for computer and electronics engineering, and manufacturing technology have proven as a valuable tool in developing programs that emphasize on computer-controlled systems for manufacturing applications.

On the industry side of the continuum, Art Hoelke, vice president and general manager at Knight’s Armament in Titusville, FL received the Industry Distinguished Service Award. Hoelke has been a strong voice in affecting positive changes for manufacturers at the industry, education, and legislative levels.
At the legislative level he played a pivotal role in formulating the Career and Professional Education (CAPE) Act which changed the deployment of career and technical education programs in school districts throughout Florida. This spearheaded the establishment of CAPE career academies that have allowed students to operate in small learning communities focused on earning national industry certifications. Hoelke has also supported Brevard County School District’s career and technical efforts by providing paid summer internships for several Brevard County’s engineering technology teachers, and has been instrumental in establishing inroads that have facilitated a number of opportunities for students and incumbent workers across the state. 

Art Hoelke at the MAF Summit
Art's partnerships with various educators and industry leaders also paved a path for Heritage High School in Brevard County to offer the M.S.S.C industrial credential that articulates 15 credit hours into Brevard Community College’s two year A.S. degree in engineering technology. Art also provided numerous hours of community support while serving on the advisory committee for Space Coast High Schools’ engineering academy. He worked closely with the academy’s teachers, volunteered Knight’s Armament as a field trip site for students, and facilitated national manufacturing experts to make local presentations to students. Furthermore, he is intricately involved with Reusable Resources—another organization that teaches kids to build products from recycled materials.

As the country undergoes one of its most challenging times he sees the need for manufacturers to secure their bases. A key component of his message to manufacturers is to work cohesively with local middle and high schools in communicating a better understanding of industry’s manpower and brainpower needs. His ultimate goal is be an agent in fostering positive changes, and steer manufacturers away from the traditional mindset that they can’t make a difference.

The time, he says, is now to push the need for a qualified workforce, and the only way to do that is to strengthen technical abilities, refine machine capability, and equip young people with the skills-set that allows the work to remain locally/globally competitive. “With the right people, we can be assured Florida will continue to be a viable manufacturing state that will offer great opportunities for our young people and future generations” Hoelke said.

For more information on the awards and/or its recipients visit www.fl-ate.org/awards, or contact Dr. Marilyn Barger, executive director of FLATE at barger@fl-ate.org/813.259.6578

Watch the video on GCCC's Robotics CIM program

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