The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Local News

April 17, 2014

Jefferson students get a peak into manufacturing industry

JEFFERSON — Seventh and eighth grade students at Jefferson Area Junior High School learned a little bit about the opportunities the manufacturing industry has to offer during the Lunch with a Professional event with Cristal Global Wednesday.

The event was coordinated by the Ashtabula County Technical and Career Campus (A-Tech) and ACCESS Ashtabula County, said Anne Starcher, career education coordinator at A-Tech.

Starcher said they usually host eight or nine Lunch with a Professional events per year with all the school districts that feed into A-Tech.

The idea behind the events is to get students thinking about a possible career choice as they prepare to enter high school.

“If they have a general idea of a career goal before they start scheduling their classes in high school, they’ll know if they need to beef up on math or language arts,” she said. “The goal is to talk one-on-one with a professional to see what the job is.”

Starcher said students may not realize all the different positions available within a company.

“There are so many jobs in these companies they’re not aware of,” she said. “They might not think they want to go into manufacturing but after talking with the professionals they might think differently.”

Students filtered into the gymnasium after finishing their lunch and spoke one-on-one with several employees from Cristal Global.

Bill Brenneman, who works in maintenance at Cristal, and, Kevin Harriger, an engineer, demonstrated a few of the tools they work with on a daily basis.

Brenneman demonstrated a thermal infrared camera that is often used on things such as pipes and electric circuits to determine if they are hot.

“We are able to tell if there is a problem before it’s a problem,” he said.

Harriger said their goal at these events is to help the students understand how technical the jobs are and what tools are needed to do the job. He said they try to get the students to understand how important the classes they take now are because they will help to develop the skills needed in their careers later in life.

Brenneman said they also stress how many more females are becoming involved in the manufacturing field.

“Any time we get a group of girls  we stress how there are a lot more women in the business now, especially where it’s technical,” he said.

Starcher said the Lunch with a Professional program has featured a variety of companies from around the county highlighting a number of different career fields such as manufacturing and healthcare.


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