Manufacturers across the country are preparing for Manufacturing Day® 2019, or MFG Day. Arriving October 4 this year, MFG Day is designed to inspire and recruit the next generation of manufacturers. The annual event began in 2012, and was created to dispel the notion that all manufacturing jobs are “dark, dirty, and dangerous,” and to show students, businesspeople, politicians, and the media that manufacturing offers some of the most exciting and innovative work environments around. This is vital for recruitment, which is of importance as many manufacturing facilities lose seasoned workers to retirement.
MFG Day Works!
Last year’s MFG Day event was a resounding success, with nearly 2,800 events held across the country. In California, which boasts the nation’s largest manufacturing sector, over 250 sites registered as event hosts and more than 330 manufacturers and support organizations—including schools, stakeholders, and other organizations—participated in or sponsored events throughout the month of October.
Deloitte, an MFG Day sponsor since 2015, has been tracking reception toward the event, and the results are very encouraging. Focusing on students who have engaged in MFG Day, the numbers are overwhelmingly positive:
- 88% found MFG Day events interesting and engaging
- 89% became more aware of manufacturing jobs in their community
- 87% were convinced that manufacturing jobs were safe, clean, and high tech
- 84% believed that manufacturing jobs offered good pay
- 84% thought that manufacturing careers could be exciting and rewarding
- 71% planned to tell friends, family, or colleagues about careers in manufacturing
MFG Day also has those in the industry excited for the future. “We need to get kids excited about manufacturing,” says Gary Johnson, Vice President of Ace Clearwater Enterprises, headquartered in Torrance, California. “That's really what National Manufacturing Day is all about, to fertilize their curiosity.”
Max Lizarrago, an Industrial Design and Engineering Professor with Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, California, also likes seeing what’s going on in the industry in order to help his students. “I get all my students jobs,” says Lizarrago. “In order to get them jobs, I need to know what's out there.”
Getting Involved in MFG Day 2019
Most MFG Day events are plant tours in which manufacturers open up their doors to an eager audience. However, those located within an industrial park and near other manufacturers may work together to offer a “mini expo” of the manufacturing community. Even if you’re not in the industry, you can still get involved. Many technical colleges hold educational fairs for their students and invite local manufacturers to set up booths or speak about their operations.
Manufacturing Day will be officially observed on Friday, October 4, but manufacturers can celebrate throughout the month based on their schedules. You can view events here, or register your own event. Your participation may consist of a tour of your manufacturing facility, office, innovation center, or other sites; holding a creative activity at a manufacturing or manufacturing-supporting site (e.g., design office, software company, etc.); attending a school event about manufacturing; taking part in a manufacturing-related jobs fair, manufacturing-related career day event, or manufacturing product expo.
Think Manufacturing Day should be more than just a one-day affair? We do too. Check out our story How to Make Manufacturing Day a Year-Round Event.