Thought Leadership

Being Future Proof

  Edge Factor Team   |     February 23, 2021 |   5 minute read
Edge Factor Future Skills Toolkit

Are you future ready? One of the many tools included in Edge Factor’s Future Skills Toolkit is a Keynote presentation by Jeremy Bout, Founder and Producer of Edge Factor. Jeremy explores the idea of being future proof. This keynote presentation provides a glimpse of the media rich experience included in the 5 days of highly engaging STEAM content to promote technical education programs that provide students with real skills for the real world.

What does it mean to be future ready? We know the world is changing, and it’s changing fast. With industries working towards sustainable economic growth which can drive progress, they need a future  workforce that is ready to push back the edge of what is possible. Working smarter, not harder. So how do we prepare our youth for the future? As Jeremy says, “At Edge Factor, it all begins with a good story.”





Looking back to move forward 


Food preservation was first invented in 1810, by French Confectioner, Nicolas Appert. Nicolas was responding to a challenge put forth by Napoleon, who was looking for a way to better feed his troops. Nicolas responded to the challenge and began the food preservation industry. Since 1978, Lidestri Food and Drink has been working to revolutionize the cooking and bottling of food and beverage. In this segment of “Careers of the Future: Augmented Reality” we hear from Travis Fox, Electronics Control Technician at Lidestri Foods. Travis shares how the industry evolved from small products, paper records and printed charts. Today they are data collecting over servers and using augmented reality to keep production lines running smoothly.


What skills will the future demand? Machines that order their own replacement parts. Machines that can maintain themselves and identify exactly what needs repairing and guide the operator through the exact procedure to fix it. Humans and computer-controlled machines working together in symbiosis.


“To say that you want to be future proof is actually a bit of an oxymoron,” says Jeremy, “To actually be future proof, you need to have skills that will help you face the challenges the future will spring on you.”  Jeremy offers key take-aways and action items to help students face the future confidently, by sharing more real-life, high impact stories.


 In “Charging Up” students meet Tyler, who after being homeless and living in a tent, moved to live with family in New York. There he attended high school in Ulster City, where he was introduced to the manufacturing program. He used his newly learned skills with Mastercam and programming CNC machines, to work with a team, and faced extreme challenges to build a solar car that raced in a student competition. He was given the gift of practical knowledge, knowing how to connect his mind and his hands, and the gift of overcoming adversity and working with a team.


 In a Virtual Workplace Experience, students will visit NUHN Industries, where Mechanical Engineer Jane Schwering shares how rewarding it was for her to see the Lagoon Crawler come to life. The Lagoon Crawler, is a fully remote-controlled machine with the main purpose of mixing and stirring manure. This machine started out as just an idea, and Jane was able to witness this idea come to life before her eyes.


In another film, “Answering Africa” we see a group of students at Purdue University being given a challenge to build a utility vehicle for a rural community in Cameroon, Africa.  When their pre-design efforts failed, these engineering students had to go back to the drawing board to create an in-field design using locally sourced materials.


There are many pathways to success to be future proof.


Edge Factor’s Future Skills Toolkit aims to inspire all students to become problem solvers, builders, and thinkers. From students who dream of being an entrepreneur, or who want to make a difference with global issues. To compassionate young men and women seeking to use their talents in healthcare, or others who desire to use their creativity in the arts and entertainment, aerospace, or engineering. The future is for everyone.


Being future proof means not being afraid to try, fail and try again and then change your mind.  Being ready to fail gracefully and move on. Future proof skills like problem-solving, time management, communication, teamwork, and critical thinking can all be found in the Future Skills 5 days of STEAM content.


This toolkit will be available for FREE until February 28, 2022, thanks to our partners National Electrical Manufacturers’ Association, Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters and National Tooling and Machining Association(NTAMA)


What are you waiting for? It’s free! Register today.

The Future Skills Toolkit is available for FREE until February 28, 2022. 



For Edge Factor Premium members only:

This Toolkit will continue to be available for you all year! And don’t forget that you can assign this content for your Classes and Students to watch the media and answer quizzes. This Toolkit paired with the Industry “Student Directed Activities” are a great way to gain metrics and see your student responses too.


Questions? Feedback? Contact us.

Email: or message us on the Live Chat. We’d love to hear from you. 


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