Here at Marlin Steel, we’re dedicated to helping to shape the future of American manufacturing, whether that’s by improving our workforce by encouraging skills growth, investing in factory automation that vastly improves safety and efficiency, or by encouraging the next generation of manufacturers by showing them how things are done.
Recently, those of us here at Marlin Steel had the opportunity to host a tour of our facilities from one of the schools in Baltimore: The Elmer A. Henderson School, also known as School No. 368 or Henderson-Hopkins.
About the Elmer A. Henderson School
Formerly known as the East Baltimore Community School, this school is a partnership school in the Johns Hopkins School of Education program. As a partnership school, Elmer A. Henderson receives significant support from the Johns Hopkins School of Education, help which was used to help the school relocate to its new facilities that opened up in 2013.
The Henderson-Hopkins school serves hundreds of students from kindergarten to eighth grade, helping them learn the skills that will help them claim their futures when they become adults. The school is dedicated to ensuring small class sizes, enriching activities for students, and fostering strong leadership.
This school, and its partnership with Johns Hopkins, is giving many inner-city children a better chance for success in life after school. For this reason, when representatives from the school asked if they could bring a seventh-grade class on tour through the Marlin Steel facility, we were happy to provide them with a tour.
Bringing Home the Importance of Education
Throughout the tour, the students were able to see our factory’s automated systems at work, and were even able to come up with a few questions for our team to answer throughout the tour.
What was really great about this tour, however, was the way it helped these students realize just how important the math, science, and English lessons that they’ve been given are to their future careers. On their tour of Marlin Steel’s factory, these students got a chance to see how the skills they learn in their core classes are used in a real-life professional environment.
As Moshe Berry, the School Social Worker for Henderson-Hopkins said, “Too often, students are taught core subjects and they don’t see the application of learning those subjects with real life experience.” The tour showed the students how science and mathematics are necessary for understanding the manufacturing needs for even the most basic metal baskets and how effective communication using clear, concise English on the job is critical for ensuring that work proceeds smoothly.
How are these skills important to manufacturing? First, any employee who is designing a basket needs to be able to make basic calculations regarding the dimensions of the basket. For example, he or she has to calculate the length of each wire to hold a specific cubic foot measurement of volume. After that, they need to gauge the number of wires needed to securely hold loads of varying weights, and then create a blueprint for the basket’s basic form. That is a lot of math, both basic and advanced, which also relies on having a working knowledge of the properties of different metal alloys, such as tensile strength.
Without a real-world example of how these skills are used for work, students may not realize just how important these skills are to their future. To make sure that students are aware of how their core education subjects are important to their futures, exposing them to as many careers and linking those careers to the knowledge they gain in class is a great idea.
We were honored to host the seventh-grade class from Elmer A. Henderson, and hope that other businesses in the area are inspired to help provide practical demonstrations of how key classes are used in other industries as well. It is also our hope to host more of these tours for Baltimore area schools in future years, as it is a wonderful opportunity to show future generations the wonderful world of manufacturing.
If you are an educator looking for an opportunity to bring a class on a tour of the Marlin Steel facility, or would like to learn more about manufacturing custom metal forms, please contact us.