Manufacturing Day Makes Big Impact

December 8, 2017 | Working together: Companies, Iowa schools mutually benefit from partnerships Alexandra Monaghan, Elevate Advanced Manufacturing Program Coordinator,

Elevate Advanced Manufacturing is a statewide initiative with the goal of changing the perception of manufacturing by educating Iowa students and parents about advanced manufacturing careers.

Throughout the year, Elevate Advanced Manufacturing hosts events and activities to help fill the skills gap in manufacturing careers. Every year the first Friday in October is extra special because it’s Manufacturing Day. MFG Day celebrates manufacturing and inspires the next generation of manufacturers.

In October, Elevate partnered with CIRAS, Iowa Workforce Development, Iowa community colleges, manufacturers and organizations to plan tours and presentations for students, parents and the public. “Participating in Manufacturing Day was very eye-opening, and all of the manufacturers were very glad they opened their doors,” commented Tanya Michener, economic developer, Newton Development Corp. “The manufacturers looked at some things internally that they hadn’t done in a while.”

Over 2,000 social media viewers participated in Elevate’s “Made in Iowa Monday” Facebook post. Elevate followers recognized and responded to featured Iowa products by commenting with the name of the manufacturer and the location of the company producing the pictured product.

Michele Wilson is an educator at McKinley Middle School and shared the school’s MFG Day success. “What an amazing day for our students,” she said. “Our kids couldn’t stop talking about their favorite parts of the day — the engaging tour guides, the fun facts they learned, witnessing the use of unusual technologies, the chance to learn about businesses they didn’t know existed, stretching the classroom outside our traditional four walls, the large equipment. I cannot thank you and your organizations enough. Teachers, parents and kids all had a great day.”

The Iowa Association of Business and Industry and Elevate Advanced Manufacturing reached nearly 5,000 people during October. Over 100 events were held. Below is a short list of highlighted events:

  • The “Made in Iowa Monday” Facebook post reached 2,143 people.
  • The McKinley Middle School sixth-grade class presentation and tours included 170 students and 20 educators.
  • The Legends in Manufacturing Dinner and Advanced Manufacturing Conference reached 361 adults.
  • Newton Economic Development tours reached 116 students.

All of Iowa is encouraged to participate in MFG Day 2018 by visiting to learn more about Manufacturing Day events. If you’re interested in participating in tours and presentations, visit