Every day we hear discussion about STEM education and the skills gap in manufacturing. STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics. There has been a national push towards the focus on these fields of study for our younger generation in hopes that by introducing possible careers in STEM, we can help to close the skills gap and protect the future of our industry. The White House has gotten involved as well and hopes has a goal to add 1 million additional STEM undergrad degree holders by 2022.

A more recent change that people have been discussing regarding STEM is the addition of an "A" to the word, making it STEAM and also focusing on the arts since the arts also have a place in manufacturing. Design and packaging are two areas that heavily depend on people with an artistic background. Turning STEM to STEAM is helping to round out peoples thought processes when it comes to where educational concentration should lay.

By informing our youth at a younger age of the possibilities of studying within the STEM or STEAM fields, we hope to strengthen not only our industry but also the minds of the up and coming manufacturers that will provide innovation and technique in the field.

Manufacturing Day (October 3rd) is just one way to focus on manufacturing and to help spread the word. Many companies are opening their facilities to local students and the community as a way to help educate. What kinds of things will you be doing this Manufacturing Day? We'd love to hear about them!