CCAT Announces Expansion of Manufacturing Summer Programs for Middle School Students

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Made possible through funding from the CT Manufacturing Innovation Fund, the “Young Manufacturers Academy” programs are expanding from three to six locations, offering more than 100 7th to 9th graders an innovative, first-hand chance to experience the high-tech world of manufacturing.

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With the expansion of the YMA programs in Waterbury, Milford and New Britain, we will be able to provide more than 100 middle school students with the chance to gain hands-on experience plus use teamwork skills critical to future workplace success.

Young Manufacturers Academy (YMA) summer programs, led by the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology, Inc. (CCAT) and supported with funding from the CT Department of Economic and Community Development’s (DECD) Manufacturing Innovation Fund, are expanding from three to six locations to reach more than 100 middle school students throughout the state this July and August.

The YMA summer programs, offered free of charge, are part of Connecticut. Dream It. Do It., an outreach program led and licensed by CCAT, which is dedicated to promoting a positive image of today’s advanced manufacturing industry and the rewarding career opportunities it offers.

Designed for students entering grades 7 to 9 in the fall, the three new programs will run over a two-week period in early August at W. F. Kaynor Technical High School in Waterbury, Platt Technical High School in Milford, and E.C. Goodwin Technical High School in New Britain.

Bus transportation will be provided from central locations, and daily lunches and snacks are included. Applications for these programs are being accepted now. Each session is limited to 20 students.

Other YMA programs are being held in July at A. I. Prince Technical High School in Hartford, Howell Cheney Technical High School in Manchester, and CCAT in East Hartford. A limited number of openings remain at the Manchester and Hartford locations.

“With the expansion of the YMA programs in Waterbury, Milford and New Britain, we will be able to provide more than 100 middle school students with the chance to gain authentic, hands-on experiences plus use teamwork, problem-solving, communication, and collaboration skills – critical to future workplace success,” said Susan Palisano, CCAT director of education and workforce development.

At YMA, students learn what goes into producing products in workshops using lean manufacturing, engineering design, and high-tech industry software. They make products by hand, virtually, and with 3D printers. They interact with manufacturers and engineers during industry site visits. And they role-play in mock interviews for jobs with real manufacturers.

Along the way, they compile a portfolio of projects involving parachutes, bridges, futuristic cars, robot programs, and carnival rides.

With simulated, team-based activities, travel to manufacturing facilities for on-site tours, and a mock career fair capstone event for students and their families, YMA provides a unique opportunity to explore what it’s like to be part of manufacturing today.

“Connecticut’s employers are increasingly concerned about the pipeline of workers who will be ready to meet the demands of the 21st century workplace. Introducing a new generation of students to today’s manufacturing, and attracting them to manufacturing-related careers through the Young Manufacturers Academy free summer programs, is vital to the future of the industry and the state’s economic prosperity,” stated Elliot Ginsberg, CCAT president and CEO.

For specific Academy session dates and additional program information, please contact Calvin Brown at cbrown(at)ccat(dot)us or call 860-282-4997.

To learn more or apply to an Academy go to:

About CCAT
Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology, Inc. (CCAT), a nonprofit economic development organization headquartered in East Hartford, Conn., is a leader and go-to resource for strengthening competitiveness and high-tech business development in the state, region and nation. CCAT focuses on three core areas: technology, efficiencies and workforce development, with expertise in manufacturing technology, IT, education and workforce strategies, and energy solutions. Through the synergy of its experienced teams, advanced technologies and extensive partnerships, CCAT provides manufacturers, educators, government, nonprofits and entrepreneurs with innovative solutions to tackle economic challenges, compete and succeed.

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Karen Jarmon
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