Middle Schoolers Win Awards for Educational Thermoforming Videos
SUTTON, Mass.—Almost 40 middle school children from the Sutton, Massachusetts Middle School visited custom thermoformer Mayfield Plastics (now Universal Plastics) last winter to participate in the AMP it up! Video challenge, and their efforts paid off with two winning videos and $5,000 in prize money for the school.
The AMP it up! Challenge invited students to research the inner workings of an advanced manufacturing innovation and how it impacts the world around them. Students were challenged to bring the topic to life in a three-minute video and submit it on the AMP it up! Website. The video needed to capture three main ideas about a product, including “how it is made, why it matters, and what it means to me.” After careful review by a panel of judges, the public voted online for the best student-developed video. Winning videos earned cash prizes or grants donated to their schools.
The Sutton Middle School won two awards for $2500 each for the videos “A Guide to Thermoforming” and “An Amp it up! Special: Mayfield Plastics.” There were a total of eleven winners and $30,000 in prize money provided by the Manufacturing Futures Fund.
Students across the state visited manufacturers such as Mayfield Plastics, Bose, and Valentine Tool Company to learn how advanced manufacturing plays an important role in our daily lives. They learned about the process, the products, and the people behind it all. Nearly 2,000 people voted in the contest.
“Mayfield Plastics is owned by Jay Kumar, who also owns Universal Plastics, a custom thermoformer based in Holyoke Massachusetts,” said Paul Davidson, sales engineer at Mayfield Plastics, in a company release. “Jay is a strong advocate of workforce development and embraced this opportunity to give students an inside view of advanced manufacturing processes. We have a strong legacy in local manufacturing and a commitment to engaging the younger generation in what we do—someday we hope that they will be part of our workforce.
“We welcomed the opportunity to work with the students from the Sutton Middle School,” Davidson continued. “Their enthusiasm for the project and their interest in Mayfield and the products we make made for a rewarding experience. They learned a lot about manufacturing in a modern environment with state of the art equipment. I am sure most of the students had never had a firsthand experience in a facility like Mayfield Plastics. I thought they all did an outstanding job with the video presentations they put together. It was interesting to see how much they learned from their short visit. It is very rewarding to see that a couple of the videos of Mayfield Plastics won the grants.”
Mayfield (www.mayfieldplastics.com), a manufacturer of custom pressure, vacuum formed, and thermoformed parts and components, specializes in thermoformed medical devices and components. The company also serves a variety of additional industries, including aerospace, telecom, electronics, computer, hospital, chromatography, machine tool, and transportation.
AMP it up! (ampitupma.com) was created to help students (middle through high school) and adults (parents, guidance counselors, and other influencers) take advantage of the many highly skilled, well-paying manufacturing jobs available in Massachusetts. Through AMP it up!, students who like to build things and solve problems can plan for a lucrative career with a choice of jobs, often without a four-year college degree. AMP it up! provides guidance that students need for jobs in high-tech processing, factory automation, product development, nanotechnology, direct digital fabrication, micro manufacturing, and other fields. Amp it up! is part of MassDevelopment.
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