2017 Manufacture Your Career Events


This fall the Southwest Virginia Alliance for Manufacturing organized two Manufacture Your Career events.  These events focused around a panel discussion highlighting the manufacturing sector and the career paths it offers. Panelists discussed multiple topics including how manufacturers are responding to the changing expectations of younger generations, facility safety, common misconceptions, employer desired soft skills, and different job opportunities. Students were encouraged to ask questions and network with the panelists at the end of the event. Both events were a terrific opportunity for local manufacturers to interact with possible future employees. Students in attendance of the events represented a variety of college majors.  

The first event took place at King University on October 30th with 95 students and ten faculty attending.  Director of Career Development, Donna Felty promoted this as one of King University’s convocation programs. The panelists for this event included: John Thompson, Virginia Cost Accountant at Strongwell; Te-Kai Shu, Social Media and Business Development Manager for Strongwell; Ty DeJager an Engineer from Strongwell; and Melinda Roberts, Human Resources Manager at Scholle IPN Packaging.

The second event took place at Wytheville Community College on November 29th.  Perry Hughes, Vice President of Workforce Development, promoted the event and recruited 25 students to attend.  The panelists for this event included: Brian Humphrey, Procurement and Logistics Manager at Darco Southern; Timothy Felts, Process Engineer at Quadrant EPP; Chris Stinson, Global Director Advanced Manufacturing Engineering in the Steering Division of ZF Friedrichshafen AG; and Valarie LaMonaca, Human Resources Manager at Mohawk.

SVAM would like to thank the volunteer panelists, Donna Felty and King University, and Perry Hughes and Wytheville Community College for hosting the events.

We will be organizing similar events throughout the region in 2018. If you are interested in hosting an event please email [email protected].