SCHAUMBURG, IL – The Technology & Manufacturing Association (TMA) held its 27th annual Precision Machining Competition Thursday night at Mazak Corporation’s Midwest Technology Center where hundreds of precision machining projects made by Chicago area high school students were on display. Lieutenant Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti, TMA Leadership, parents, instructors and company representatives were in attendance as students learned how their work rated in comparison to their peers and explored possible job opportunities with area manufacturers.
“I want to encourage all of you to continue this dream you are starting because manufacturing isn’t just about the talent or technical side of what you learn, there is a skill and an art to it. You are all artists – embrace that, grow into that and see where it can take you,” TMA Chairman, Todd Beauchamp, said in front of the competitors, parents and instructors. “There are a lot of companies here that are looking for you and can utilize your craft.”
Manufacturers are eager to find talented young people interested in careers in an industry that is receiving newfound attention. This year’s TMA competition drew the interest of a record-high 20 area high schools with nearly 300 machining projects, up from just 71 five years ago. 243 students participated and were honored at this year’s competition.
“Governor Bruce Rauner and I wanted to tell you how important it is what you folks are doing today. Manufacturing is one of the largest industries we have here in Illinois,” said Lt. Governor Sanguinetti as she spoke to everyone in attendance. “Manufacturing is incredibly technical, a great environment to work in, the salaries are amazing, and jobs are available. I’m so thankful all of you are here thinking outside of the box, and thinking of the opportunities manufacturing provides.”
Area manufacturers volunteered their professional technicians to judge the submissions. 52 different winners were awarded for their excellent work in machining projects such as CAD design, drill press vices, hack saw, fixture box, offset v-block, CNC turning, CNC milling and CNC programming. Out of the 52 winners, 6 received perfect scores.
High schools that participated in this year’s competition include: Cary Grove, Glenbard East, Hampshire, Harvard, Homewood-Flossmoor, Jefferson, Lake Park, Leyden East, Leyden West, McHenry East, McHenry West, Palatine, Elk Grove, Rich East, Rolling Meadows, Schaumburg, South Elgin, Streamwood, Wheeling, and Woodstock.
About TMA: Founded in 1925, the Technology & Manufacturing Association (TMA) represents and supports manufacturers in the Chicago metropolitan area and surrounding counties in northern Illinois, northern Indiana, and southern Wisconsin. TMA has almost 1,000 members and represents over 32,000 employees and nearly 26M square feet of manufacturing in Illinois.
Learn More at: TMA Illinois