Middle school students compete in video contest that asks ‘What’s So Cool About Manufacturing?’

By Stephen Huba, Trib Live

The winners of a contest that paired 20 Western Pennsylvania manufacturers with 20 middle schools will be announced at Catalyst Connection’s annual manufacturing reception on Wednesday.

The middle school students were encouraged to go behind the scenes and interview employees of local companies and submit videos for the “What’s So Cool About Manufacturing?” Student Video Contest. The project is meant to get students thinking about manufacturing as a career.

The theme of this year’s event, which will include a panel discussion by several young professionals, is “Industry 4.0 — A Bright Future.” An estimated 750 company leaders, students, parents and teachers are expected to attend.

Catalyst Connection, an economic development group that works with small manufacturers, will hold the annual reception and awards ceremony from 5-9:30 p.m. Wednesday (Feb. 20) at the UPMC Club at Heinz Field, 900 Art Rooney Ave., Pittsburgh.

The participating Westmoreland County companies were Cleaveland/Price Inc., Trafford, paired with Norwin School District, and PBM Valve Solutions, Irwin, paired with Franklin Regional School District. The other companies were from Allegheny, Butler and Washington counties.

Each school team submitted its video to Catalyst Connection, and voting took place online at whatssocool.org.