Careers in Manufacturing and the Greater Philadelphia Manufacturing Summit

September 17, 2014

The negative stereotypes of the manufacturing industry may create reservations for those seeking employment. For others, born after the factories and manufacturing industry declined in the United States may not have any idea what employment in this now revitalized and diverse industry entails.

Today the manufacturing sector is a leader in innovation and advanced technology, requiring STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) skills in order to thrive in this competitive economy. Sophisticated and exciting technologies including Bioengineering, Robotics, Digital Technology, Big Data, and Nanotechnology are used. 3D printing is utilized in industries ranging from candy to casts and everything in between. Salaries are much higher as well, the average annual salary of manufacturing workers is $77,000 and because of the skills gap and baby boomers retiring, it is an industry that is hiring; hiring individuals with skills in a variety of fields. John Cobb, executive vice president of corporate affairs at Stratasys believes it is the designers and engineers that are integral in moving technology forward to accommodate the demand, specifically within 3D Printing.

There is also a resurgence of buying American made goods, a revival of patriotism that increases the demand and ultimately, consumer spending helps keep U.S. manufacturing thriving. According to Michael Araten, President and CEO at K’Nex, “Made in America” is the most popular searched phrase on Amazon. America has tremendous growth opportunities within the manufacturing sector for creative, outside the box thinkers within STEAM.

Public perceptions need to be changed, and more awareness has to be provided to younger prospective employees that will lead to a more dynamic workforce that is competitive and exciting.

On Friday, October 3, please consider hosting an open house of your facility to students and teachers. Learn more at

Please join DVIRC in supporting and celebrating manufacturing on Wednesday, October 1st for the Greater Philadelphia Manufacturing Summit – Energize Your Spirit of Competition at the Simeone Automotive Museum from 7:30 am until 5:00 pm.