Engage, Inspire and Prepare Students with Virtual Events

  Edge Factor Team   |     November 24, 2021 |   4 minute read
SME and Edge Factor partner to inspire students with virtual events

The SME Education Foundation is partnering with Edge Factor to provide engaging pre-event experiences for students to discover career pathways and prepare to attend live Student Summit Events! Filled with career exploration videos on manufacturing and engineering, these virtual event pages are being shared with educators and students two weeks prior to attending SME Education Foundation’s live Student Summit events for EASTEC, WESTEC, SOUTHTEC and RAPID + TCT.


The goal of these pre-event experiences is to open students’ eyes to rewarding career pathways, help students learn about SME’s Scholarships, Membership, and Mentorships, and learn what to expect during the live Student Summit Events.


“By the time they attend SME Education Foundation’s live Student Summit Events, we want every student to understand that there are extraordinary career opportunities in the world of advanced manufacturing and engineering!” said Larissa Hofman, Vice President of Edge Factor.


The SME Education Foundation inspires, prepares and supports the next generation of manufacturing and engineering talent through its Student Summit event series, SME PRIME® (Partnership Response In Manufacturing Education) initiative, and Student Scholarship program.


The first step in developing the next generation of talent is to inspire students to consider manufacturing as a career choice. The SME Education Foundation Student Summit event series delivers student-centric programming, guest speakers, hands-on competitions, scholarship awards, technology demonstrations and guided show-floor tours to high school students at SME conferences and events across the country.  Showcasing the high-tech nature of modern manufacturing and fighting the misperception that manufacturing is dull, dirty and dying. Hosted alongside SME conferences and events, each of these one-day summits held over three days provided high school students with their first taste of manufacturing.


Engaging Virtual Pre-event Experience   


During the pre-event experience hosted on Edge Factor’s platform, virtual attendees were welcomed with a video featuring SME Education Foundation’s Vice President, Rob Luce. Classrooms and individual students then watched a motivational Keynote Presentation by Edge Factor’s President Jeremy Bout that shared life lessons from real life manufacturers pushing back the edge of what’s possible. “What I really love about manufacturing is being able to understand how to use technology and how it works well with a team. It opens up endless possibilities for you to build unique products, impact lives and solve problems,” said Jeremy Bout. 


Students are able to dig deeper and watch videos that showcase CAD/CAM, Robotics & Mechatronics, Metrology & Quality Additive Manufacturing, Welding, and Machining & Fabrication, to discover what a “day in the life” looks like in specific careers, and how STEAM, and Soft Skills come alive on-the-job. The pre-event experiences also included videos featuring SME Education Foundation team members sharing information on their Scholarships, SME Membership, and Mentorship opportunities, as well as a student-driven, virtual Scavenger Hunt with gift card prizes, and additional cinematic Edge Factor films!


As a part of the Scavenger Hunt activity, students were asked to identify their key takeaways from the event in one or two sentences. The responses were overwhelmingly positive. Here are some of our favorites:


“There are so many people behind the scenes who design & manufacture products we use every day. It's such a fascinating and important field and industry that does not get the recognition it deserves.”


“I feel now that I already know so much about SME, I’ll be more prepared for the event.”


“I am so excited to explore the many more jobs there are in the world that have to do with metal and machining.”


Adapting to the current circumstances


Are you looking for NEW ways to connect with students and parents? Have you had to cancel or postpone your live events? Edge Factor is partnering with leaders to transform previously planned live events into high impact, Virtual Event Experiences. Inspire your audience members to explore industries and career pathways using specially selected videos and interactive activities from the robust Edge Factor library. These e-learning resources can be shared with educators, students, business leaders, and parents in your community. 


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