FLATE’s 2014 Manufacturing Day Initiative Increases Industry Tours Statewide

Manufacturing Day in Florida is almost round the corner, and FLATE and its partners that include
Manufacturers Association of Florida, Regional Manufacturers Associations and Florida TRADE, are working to put Florida on the manufacturing map (once again) on a national level. FLATE’s Manufacturing Day strategy last year, both before, during after the event, served as an effective mechanism that enabled statewide participation. In that, FLATE’s statewide outreach last year successfully built in-roads for communities across Florida to create sustainable partnerships and outreach between Regional Manufacturers Associations, School Districts and manufacturers. As a result of those efforts and subsequent follow-up webinars that engaged statewide stakeholders, this year regional manufacturing teams are educated and better prepared to independently organize tours, proclamations, and sponsorship for t-shirts. 

This year as in last there are many ways for industry and educators across Florida to participate and celebrate manufacturing in Florida. These include:
  • Hosting a “Made in Florida” student tour 
  • Hosting an open house for Career Source Florida talent pool
  • Adopting a school as a Dream It! Do It!  manufacturing mentor
  •  Hosting a “Made in Florida” tour AND adopting a school
  • Assisting in getting a county commission proclamation for Manufacturing Day 
  • Contributing to Manufacturing Day student tours and tee-shirts designed and produced by FLATE
Given the success of tours last year and responses received from students, educators, manufacturers and regional organizations across the state through surveys, FLATE will once again be coordinating “Made in Florida” high-tech industry tours for students across the state on October 3, 2014 and any additional tours conducted between Oct. 1- 17, 2014. Manufacturers and stakeholders across the state are strongly urged to participate, organize regional team of manufacturers, schools, other community groups, and join in the celebrations in a number of ways. There are a number of ways to get involved and help with outreach:

  • Schools/Districts can provide transportation and chaperones for students
  •  Manufacturing companies can host tours and provide lunch for student groups
  • Manufacturing related professional organizations can support the costs for Manufacturing Day regional t-shirts for students and encourage companies to participate
  • Organize a regional team of manufacturers, schools, other community groups
  • Send any adopted school information to Dream !It Do !t. (email: jwolfe@sfma.org)

To date 78 industry tours that includes an open house at St. Petersburg College and at Florida Gateway College has been finalized in 34 counties across Florida with many more to be added between now and October 2014. Below is an in-depth look at tours that have been finalized so far in counties across Florida. We will be updating this list on our webpage (http://madeinflorida.org/manufacturing-day) continually as more tours get added, so stay tuned!

FLATE will work with regional “Manufacturing Day teams” to help connect schools with companies, arranging media publicity, designing and delivering t-shirts that students can wear as part of a 2014 manufacturing day industry tour. One of FLATE’s most important initiatives during manufacturing day is also successfully gathering data from students, educators and manufacturers across the state to assess the overall impact of the industry tours. In 2013, FLATE surveyed 1300 students across the state who mentioned their perception manufacturing careers were positively impacted as a result of the tours. The tours also impacted educators who expressed the tours gave them a better insight about integrating STEM into their curriculum. Manufacturers also stated industry tours served as an effective tool for them to educate and/or create a talent pool for a future workforce. “No other organization in the state has the data collection strategy that FLATE implemented during National Manufacturing Day in 2013” said Desh Bagley, outreach manager for FLATE. FLATE will once again implement a similar strategy this year to survey all tour participants with a bigger goal to increase participation of students, educators and manufacturers.

In addition to tours, FLATE has designed official Manufacturing Day in Florida T- shirts that will serve as a tangible and long-term reminder of the significance of manufacturing in Florida. Sponsorships for T-shirt students can wear while touring regional companies are pouring in. Sponsorship for T-shirts start at $200. To pledge support and send in a logo that will be printed on the official 2014 Manufacturing Day T-shirts contact Desh Bagley, FLATE’s outreach manager at bagley@fl-ate.org by Sep. 11, 2014. Manufacturers that have taken a lead in sponsoring T-Shirts are outlined below include: 

New Made In Florida Curriculum for National Manufacturing Day in Florida
This year FLATE has also developed curriculum for elementary as well as 7th-10th grade students. FLATE will pilot these lesson plans as part of Manufacturing Day 2014. Elementary, middle and high schools are welcome to access these resources which are posted on FLATE’s Wiki and use it to raise awareness about high-tech manufacturing careers in Florida.

Visit our webpage (http://madeinflorida.org/manufacturing-day) on the “Made in Florida” site for more MFG DAY in FLORIDA information. This is also where we will recognize participating companies and organizations. If you would like to be connected with a regional manufacturers association in your area to discuss additional outreach activities for students in your community for this year, or next, please contact Desh Bagley, FLATE outreach manager at bagley@fl-ate.org/813.253.7838 and Dr. Marilyn Barger, executive director at barger@fl-ate.org/ 813.259.6578.  Desh will follow up with all participants with additional information regarding the statewide Manufacturing Day information.

Please share this with your organizational members or anyone who may be interested. We look forward to everyone’s participation in Florida’s Manufacturing Day celebrations.

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