TMA #AsktheMakers Campaign builds Manufacturing Month interest

SCHAUMBURG – The Technology & Manufacturing Association is once again celebrating Manufacturing Month during October. Last year, the association shared live tours of Chicago area manufacturers with interested high school students via Facebook. Before that, TMA sent staffers to video and interview TMA members about the manufacturing efforts they do every day.

This year, as the COVID pandemic continues to impose restrictions in Illinois, the association took on a campaign of gathering questions from high school students and posed them to manufacturers.

Mark West of Weiler Engineering in Elgin IL answered a student’s question:

Thom Shelow of Superior Joining Technologies answered another:

Other questions included:

  • Question #1 – How long does it take to be good at your job?
  • Question #2 – What education do you expect from your employees? What education do you provide for your employees?
  • Question #3 – How long is the average schooling for an apprentice?
  • Question #4 – What is the average starting salary?
  • Question #5 – How many hours do you work in a day and what are the working conditions?
  • Question #6 – What kind of job can you get with the skills on the machines?
  • Question #7 – How would something like a bolt or a screw be manufactured?
  • Question #8 – What’s your favorite machine?
  • Question #9 – Where does the metal come from?
  • Question #10 – How does it feel to be manufacturers of different companies?
  • Question #11 – How long does training take to operate a machine?
  • Question #12 – What does a day look like for a CNC operator?
  • Question #13 – What is laser welding and how does it differ from arc welding?

TMA continues to encourage manufacturers to join the effort by simply sending TMA a video clip answering one of the students’ questions to Amanda at

The #AsktheMakers campaign plans to continue throughout October 2021.