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The Manufacturing Technology Classroom of the Future Comes to Life at IMTS Student Summit

As today’s youth shows an increasing interest in skilled trade and technical careers, the Smartforce Student Summit at IMTS 2024 is an immersive experience designed to inspire students to seek a career pathway in manufacturing.
Jun 28, 2024

As today’s youth shows an increasing interest in skilled trade and technical careers, the Smartforce Student Summit at IMTS 2024 is an immersive experience designed to inspire students to seek a career pathway in manufacturing. The Smartforce Student Summit runs concurrently with IMTS 2024, held Sept. 9-14 at Chicago’s McCormick Place, and is located in the East Building, Level 2. The Smartforce Student Summit is FREE to all students and is powered by AMT – The Association for Manufacturing Technology and SME

Registration to the Smartforce Student Summit is free, and educator and student badges provide access to all exhibit floors at IMTS 2024, which has more than 1.2 million square feet of manufacturing technology exhibits. To energize educators and engage young minds in K-12 schools, colleges, and community-based organizations, the Student Summit will feature: 

  • Hands-on, interactive exhibits geared to students featuring 3D printers, robotics, AR/VR, metrology and mechatronics equipment, CAD/CAM design software, CNC machinery, and digital twin technology 

  • “Lightning Learning” conference sessions presented by industry and STEM education leaders about the latest technologies and career opportunities in manufacturing today 

  • High-energy “Manufacturing Ally Rally” keynotes and panel discussions with manufacturing experts and thought leaders Meaghan Ziemba (Mavens of Manufacturing), Andrew Crowe (American Manufacturing Renaissance), Chris Luecke (Manufacturing Happy Hour Podcast), and Toni Neary (SME) 

  • “Career Connections” QR codes in many exhibits for students ready to enter the job market to instantly connect with exciting job opportunities via their smart phones 

  • Robot demonstrations from Chicago-area FIRST Robotics teams.  

The Student Summit’s nearly 70 exhibits include industry-leading companies such as FANUC, Haas Automation, HEIDENHAIN, Mitsubishi Electric Automation, Mitutoyo, Renishaw, Siemens, Verisurf, Yaskawa, and ZEISS. Other featured exhibits will be from NASA Artemis and interactive mobile labs from the Manufacturing USA Institutes, College of DuPage, and others. 

“In addition to displaying our industry’s vision of the manufacturing technology classroom of the future at the Smartforce Student Summit, we want all students to feel a sense of belonging in the manufacturing industry,” says Greg Jones, director of strategic programs and partnerships at SME. “We want to show a diverse group of young people that they can seek an education in STEM and eventually a career in manufacturing.”  

For more information at the Smartforce Student Summit at IMTS 2024, visit IMTS.com/smartforce. Educators and students can register now for free.  

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Author
Catherine “Cat” Ross
Director of Community Engagement
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