Local Schools and Businesses Come Together to Support STEM Education in Erie, PA

Mike Burkhart / January 11, 2019
Local Schools and Businesses Come Together to Support STEM Education in Erie, PA

McDowell and Fort LeBoeuf high schools team up with manufacturing companies like PHB Inc. and Reddog Industries to help expose students to STEM education. STEM–science, technology, engineering, and mathematics–education provides students with opportunities to explore STEM-related concepts, develop a passion, and hopefully pursue a job in a STEM field. STEM education helps to bridge the ethnic and gender gaps sometimes found in math and science fields. McDowell High School in Millcreek is stepping forward to help in the push of STEM education by opening the “McDowell High School Manufacturing Academy” at the beginning of the next academic year. McDowell Manufacturing Academy will be equipped with the same machines found in local manufacturing companies across Erie, PA, and will be held to standard STEM curriculum, meeting the needs of what those local manufacturers look for when hiring.

Located in Fairview, Pennsylvania, PHB recognizes that skilled people and technological growth are keystones for success in today’s global marketplace. PHB continues to commit resources to remain an industry leader by continuing education on high-tech equipment and machinery for processes including computer imaging, robotics, and CNC. PHB Inc. also works to stay on top of all the software updates for AutoCAD, Pro-E, MAGMAsoft®, CAD/CAM, and EDI programming to service a variety of markets including plastics, telecommunications, electrical equipment, automotive, medical, industrial equipment, aerospace, and defense industries.

Why STEM Education?

Everyday decisions make use of STEM concepts. Science, technology, engineering and mathematics workers play a key role in the sustained growth and stability of the U.S. economy. According to the U. S. Department of Commerce, STEM occupations are growing at 17%. It is clear that most future jobs will require a basic understanding of math and science. STEM education creates critical thinkers, increases science literacy, and enables the next generation of innovators, leading to new products and processes that sustain our economy. However, if STEM education is not improved, the United States will continue to fall in world ranking with math and sciences. Initiatives have been established to increase the roles of women and minorities in STEM-related fields and breaks the traditional gender roles. In order to compete in a global economy, STEM education and careers must be a national priority.

Inspiring Students to Learn & Grow in Erie Communities

A STEM education is important to spark interests in students who may want to pursue a STEM career. However, teachers do not carry the whole burden of STEM education, but they do have hundreds of resources at their fingertips. Thanks to the efforts of McDowell High School, Fort LeBoeuf High school, and local manufacturers like PHB Inc., it’s getting easier to provide more information to students on STEM education and help them gain an interest in STEM-related careers.

“Gentlemen, thank you so much for allowing our robotics team to visit yesterday. It is an eye-opening experience to see robots in action in an actual manufacturing environment. The students were able to see many of the ABB robots in your facility and compare them to the FANUC ones that Lincoln Electric had. I think the questions you all answered that the students posed themselves made the greatest impact on their learning about what is involved in using robotics in the workplace. They also now have more examples of STEM-related careers. People often just think of engineers in the design process, but as our FLB Alum Mr. Haibach explained to them, there are many more people and jobs involved in the production of PHB products.  It was a great experience for both students and adults. Thank you so much!” – Angela D. Tarr, School Librarian at Fort LeBoeuf High School and Middle School

“The Millcreek Township School District proudly announced its latest academic program initiative, the McDowell High School Manufacturing Academy. This program is for workforce-oriented students to assist with career readiness and internship experience. Several representatives from partner companies attended the press conference to support the District with its new enterprise. A tour was provided showcasing some of the equipment being used for the program.

Great things are happening at McDowell!!”- Millcreek Facebook Post

To find out more information on McDowell’s new “McDowell High School Manufacturing Academy” check out a related article “McDowell HS to Open Manufacturing Academy”.  See all the opportunities PHB has to offer for our Future employees.

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