TUPELO – 2022 was a banner year for the Tek2Go Manufacturing Camp, which saw more students and teachers in these two camps than in the other camps they’ve hosted since 2007.
“It’s important for the students and the teachers to understand that what is being learned and what is being taught has deep meaning in the workforce,” said Hawkeye President Bryan Hawkins. “This camp allows participation and orientation through hands-on operations. The resulting questions that are posed to us would never be asked in the classroom because they would only arise through experience rather than theory.
“Without experiencing the world of manufacturing, the participant would never take into consideration things like the thickness and type of the material being used, how the material reacts to various operations, how these affect the final accuracy of the resultant product, and how to measure them.”
As with previous years, there were two sessions… one with students and one with teachers. Each participant was involved in making their own unique clock that is predesigned every year by Hawkeye’s creative engineering staff. They traveled to each operation station throughout the plant to help make their component parts and to observe how the many advanced machines are interrelated.
“In addition to the participants learning from us, we’re also learning from them,” said Hawkins. “We learn what classes are being offered and how well the concepts are being retained. We also provide input to the teachers to stress the importance of what students need to be learning to make them more marketable at graduation.”
Hawkeye employees are directly involved and interact with the participants in each phase of the camp. “We also demonstrate how important the fundamentals of the 3 R’s are and how they are used in our business,” said Hawkins. “In many cases, teachers are surprised to learn how complex math equations (such as the Pythagorean, Quadratic and Trigonometric) are employed daily in today’s advanced manufacturing environment.
“It’s worth the effort to show them that advanced manufacturing is a great career. What you create is only limited by your imagination based upon a sound education.”