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MMCC helps 5th graders explore technology careers

Mid Michigan Community College (MMCC) recently hosted 50 fifth-grade students from Renaissance Public Academy in Mt. Pleasant at an event aimed at exploring careers in technology.

Students design cell phone cases in SolidWorks while Eric Sander demonstrates

Students design cell phone cases in SolidWorks while Eric Sander demonstrates

Students visited MMCC’s Morey Technical Education Center in Mt. Pleasant where they toured the facility and engaged in hands-on activities focused on Computer Aided Drafting and Design (CADD) and 3D printing. Students spent an hour and a half at the Tech Center developing a greater awareness of manufacturing and the various technological fields associated with modern production.

During that time, the fifth graders designed 3D models of cell phone cases using SolidWorks CADD software. Overseeing the event were Eric Sander, lead CADD faculty at MMCC, and three current students in the college’s CADD program.

“The fifth graders were able to learn so much because they were also having a lot of fun,” said Eric Sander, lead CADD instructor at MMCC. “I love collaborative efforts like this, and feel grateful to have been approached by Renaissance to coordinate the event. The teachers and staff there went the extra mile to give their students outside experiences that reinforce classroom learning.”

Stephanie Papenfus from Renaissance Public School Academy coordinated the event as part of the school’s effort to introduce students to a variety of career possibilities.

“This was a great opportunity for our students to see the types of fields they can pursue after or even during high school,” stated Renaissance fifth-grade teacher Mackensye Ancona. “Our students need encouragement, and they need to understand options available to them in the future, which might motivate them to do their best in school now.”

The fifth graders had positive responses to their time at the Morey Technical Education Center as well.

“I thought the field trip to MMCC was very educational,” said one fifth-grader. “I loved how so many people were there to help. They were also very nice. We had enough time to have fun.”

Located on MMCC’s Mt. Pleasant campus at the corner of Broadway and Summerton, the Morey Technical Education Center offers flexible learning spaces to accommodate a variety of training programs that meet present and future demand for skilled manufacturing personnel. While the facility houses dedicated welding and CADD labs, other areas are open and meant to respond to specific training requests from area manufacturers.

For more information about MMCC’s technical centers, visit www.midmich.edu.

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