(03/12/19) The El Dorado Chamber of Commerce, South Arkansas Community College and local industries partnered together to host a Manufacturing Day for freshmen students at El Dorado High School.
“It’s a chance for companies to plant these seeds in the 9th graders while they’re trying to decide what career path they want to go down,” said Sherry Howard, Associate Vice President of Workforce Development at SouthArk.
Manufacturing Day is a national day of recognition that’s observed annually on the first Friday in October. Union County hosts two, one in the spring and another in the fall.
“The industries need skilled workers,” Howard said. “The only way we can do that is starting in the school systems and planting those seeds about the job opportunities.”
The manufacturing and industrial workforce has been declining in recent years. So, they’re looking for the next generation of manufacturers to operate and repair equipment.
“These industries are just really desperate for people,” said David Carty, Director of Process Technology at SouthArk.
There were 14 manufacturing industries that spoke to students about their careers. The day consisted of two break-out sessions and a job fair.
“We got to see a wide variety of jobs and career options that you could go into,” said Emma Gaul, student at EHS.
Many of the positions don’t require a degree just a passion for the work.
“It showed the people like my grade more options that we can do because not everyone is going to go to college,” said Makenzie Caver, student at EHS.