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Youth Manufacturing Day empowers high school students to think about their futures

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working headsets

Students donned virtual reality goggles provided by Transfr.

Last week, Hillsboro School District buses rolled up to Youth Manufacturing Day at the Willow Creek Opportunity Center, delivering more than 60 curious students and teachers from Century High School, Glencoe High School, Liberty High School, and Hillsboro Online High School and Hillsboro High School.

The event was funded by Portland Community College and organized in collaboration with the Washington County Chamber of Commerce and Hillsboro School District to spark interest in the manufacturing sector.

“Youth Manufacturing Day was designed to illustrate some of the manufacturing opportunities available, and to help these high school students envision both their educational and professional trajectory,” said Ariel Ladum, training and education specialist at the Willow Creek Opportunity Center.

Girl using VR

Students using VR headset.

The event opened with a presentation from PCC Workforce Development Coordinator Trenard May, who wowed the students by announcing “a manufacturing job in this area could earn them an average of $78,000 per year.” That fact built interest for the interactive stations related to high-tech manufacturing where students met with industry professionals and recruiters from Intel, Twist Bioscience, Align Precision, and Chris King Precision Components.

Plus, college admissions staff, academic programs (Microelectronics, Mechatronics, Electrical Engineering), Oregon Manufacturing Innovation Center, Future Connect, and the Small Business Development Center were exhibiting and instructing participants as well. 

By the end of the event, students had completed lab stations dressed in cleanroom suits and experienced drone technology, silicon wafers, chips and machine sorting technology. The student activities included using electrical trainers and engaging in a troubleshooting activity using the model-based problem solving lab equipment. Some students donned virtual reality goggles provided by Transfr, a partnering firm that provides virtual and augmented reality simulation support for some of PCC’s hybrid classes centered on future workforce training.

The Willow Creek Opportunity Center is a hub that connects employers, community members and the social service system. It provides opportunities for people to transform their lives through education and career track employment.

Youth Manufacturing Day Gallery
Poppie and studentsworking headsetsGirl using VR

About Misty Bouse

A Portland Community College public relations program specialist, Misty Bouse has been working in college advancement for more than eight years. A graduate of University of Oregon, Misty has worked as a managing editor for BUILDERNews Magaz... more »