Summer Camp 2.0

In the law they use the term, res ipsa loquitur.  The thing speaks for itself.

I’ve got a lot on my plate this morning, so I’ll not write much about this news item.  I will simply let it speak for itself.

The New York Times ran a small trend story a few weeks ago on a series of manufacturing “camps” for kids that had been opened in various parts of the country.  One in particular was a camp just outside my hometown of Chicago, targeting young girls it tries to teach the value of a career in manufacturing.

As someone who has long advocated the need to impart to our children (and theirs) the many rewards of a life spent in the pursuit of making things, not to mention the robust and still-growing job market for workers with higher-level manufacturing skills, news items like this one warm my heart.

Especially after a summer in which we saw so many reports about broad cutbacks in educational spending far and wide; cuts which have triggered everything from a steep decline in the number of accredited trade classes and schools (which, as I’ve said many times before, are now more important to our economic future than ever), to a school district in Pennsylvania that saved itself $150,000 in operating expenses by replacing its lawn-mowing service with a herd of sheep.

(And as Rachel Maddow tweeted at the time, “Nothing says 21st century global superpower like schools turning to sheep.”)

Nothing says 21st century global superpower like schools turning to sheep.

A manufacturing summer camp?  Or more to the point, a girl’s manufacturing summer camp?  What an incredible idea.

After all, I look at my senior sales and management team, which actually has more women on it than men, and think to myself, “Where would this company be without these women?”

Just as I think of my immediate family, and wonder how I’d ever get by without my wife’s insight and her counsel on so many matters, business or otherwise, or without my daughter’s deep-rooted moral compass, which is always true, always pointing in the right direction, and always — always — there when I need it.

If you own (or work for) a manufacturing company and have one of these youth manufacturing camps in your area, I urge you to do what I intend to do; namely, make a call.  See if there isn’t some way you can help them next summer in the pursuit of their noble mission.  Chances are your local camp will want a little support in the way of money.

But more than likely, next summer what they’ll really want from you is the benefit of your experience, and, perhaps, the benefit of your shop or manufacturing facility.  After all, nothing opens the eyes of a child, or makes a deeper impression, like some good old-fashioned, hands-on, show-and-tell, know what I mean?

At any rate, I urge you to go to the link above and read the Times story. After all, res ipsa loquitur, my friends.

Some things do indeed just speak for themselves.

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