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home : news : business   May 25, 2016

10/24/2013 11:30:00 AM
Expo shows students careers in manufacturing

Juniors Morgan Maloney (left) and Alexis Trompeter of Seneca Township High School talk with Pari Patel, marketing specialist with Transco Products Inc. at the Discover Manufacturing Career Expo on Wednesday in Utica.NewsTribune photo/Rachel Stella
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Juniors Morgan Maloney (left) and Alexis Trompeter of Seneca Township High School talk with Pari Patel, marketing specialist with Transco Products Inc. at the Discover Manufacturing Career Expo on Wednesday in Utica.
NewsTribune photo/Rachel Stella
Rachel Stella
Media Editor

About 300 students from 13 area high schools learned about careers in manufacturing Wednesday during their visit to the North Central Illinois Discover Manufacturing Career Expo.

Organized by the North Central Regional Betterment Coalition, whose mission is “to create and facilitate a means for new educational, cultural and economic opportunities in North Central Illinois,” according to its website, the event brought representatives of more than 10 manufacturers and not-for-profits to Celebrations 150 in La Salle.

“We want to make sure students are introduced to career opportunities right in their communities,” said Expo Committee chairman Patricia Walters. “People are so happy to see a program like this in the north central Illinois area.”

Illinois Manufacturers’ Association Vice President of External Affairs, Jim Nelson, announced the funding of a $500 scholarship in honor of Carus Corp. chairman M. Blouke Carus. The scholarship will be awarded annually to an incoming Illinois Valley Community College student who pursues a career in manufacturing.

Seneca Township High School juniors Alexis Trompeter and Morgan Maloney said they were interested in business-related careers.

Trompeter said the expo would help her “(find) out more about the career I’m interested in and finding out about the jobs that go with it.”

Maloney said she was specifically looking at a career in business management.
“I like the business aspect (of the job),” Maloney said. “I like managing and being in charge.”

Walters said she wanted people to know that manufacturing offers more than just production jobs.

“People aren’t aware of … the wide variety of careers in manufacturing,” Walters said.
Computer-aided drafting teacher Ed Frankenberger brought 46 students from Ottawa Township High School to the expo.

“(The expo) gives students a perspective on the world of work … and that these opportunities are local,” Frankenberger said. “La Salle County has lots of manufacturing.”

Rachel Stella can be reached at (815) 220-6933 or

Reader Comments

Posted: Saturday, October 26, 2013
Article comment by: JustSaying

North Central Illinois Discover Manufacturing Career Expo brought together more than high school students and manufacturers. Over 45 separate entities and many individual volunteers from all corners of LaSalle, Bureau and Putnam counties came together to support the regional effort to bring awareness to our young adults that fantastic careers are available right here in the Greater Illinois Valley. Many thanks for all of your contributions!

The new M Blouke Scholarship for IVCC, which was created by the Illinois Manufacturers' Association is in conjunction with the Expo and will be annually awarded to a student who attends the Expo and meets the other criteria of the scholarship. Those are some pretty good odds for the students who apply and a great incentive to be chosen as an Expo participant.

In particular, I would like to compliment all of the participating high schools and students. The high schools were asked to gather the attending students and conduct pre-work over and above the regular school day. Students completed research on the participating manufacturers and learned about business etiquette. This additional effort on behalf of the students and their high schools resulted in well-prepared and well-mannered young adults presenting a very positive impression on all of the manufacturers. The employers were delighted at the interaction!

The Expo represents another step in our continuing community development. The combined efforts of industry, business, education, and community organizations to better our local future and opportunities deserves our attention and our support! Kudos to everyone involved!

Posted: Friday, October 25, 2013
Article comment by: Anonymous29629

This 2013 North Central Illinois Discover Manufacturing Career Expo at Celebrations 150 last Wednesday, October 23, 2013, was a magnificent opportunity for all 300 high school students as well as for the many manufacturers who participated. Many, many people in attendance approached me to compliment the event, all its supporters, and it's committee chairperson, Patricia Walters.

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