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Virtual Miles For Manufacturing Event Funds Education Programs

Community-based organizations, STEM and Robotics programs benefit

McLean, Va. – In its ongoing support of the manufacturing technology community, IMTS – The International Manufacturing Technology Show launched a virtual Miles For Manufacturing (M4M) event in October —  continuing through March 2021 — that is designed to fund community-based organizations that champion under-represented, under-served students who participate in STEM and robotics programs in schools, in addition to directly funding STEM and FIRST™ robotics programs.

Manufacturing companies, schools, families and friends from across the country are invited to participate in their community, whether they choose to walk, run, stroll, swim, hike or bike on treadmills, trails, roadways, or waterways. The M4M effort is designed to encourage students to embark on an education and career pathway toward manufacturing.

The Miles for Manufacturing 5K run first took place in 2014 at IMTS – The International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago and has since been held in Chicago and places where AMT – The Association For Manufacturing Technology and IMTS hold key events and conferences. To date, Miles For Manufacturing has raised more than $120,000. IMTS covers the costs of all the event activities and logistics so that 100% of the funds go directly to benefit students.

Greg Jones, Vice President, Smartforce Development, AMT, is charged with selecting organizations and schools that qualify for funding from M4M. “In past years, we have donated cash where it’s needed, 3D printers produced by our partner, MakerGear and Bionics4Education Robotics kits produced by our partner, Festo. This year, we asked schools to apply for cash to fund specific needs, such as technology for their classrooms or to help with building their robots, ensuring students could compete locally, in their state or region and ultimately in national robotics competitions,” said Jones. “This year, more than ever, we wanted to ensure that students could continue to explore their passions in STEM and robotics, especially as students were learning from home, making working together with their teams more challenging.”

The Miles For Manufacturing event has provided funding to the following programs to date:

  • ProjectSYNCERE, a community-based organization that champions STEM students in Chicago Public Schools to encourage more students to seek an education and career pathway toward engineering.
  • The Industrial Technology program at East Leyden High School, Franklin Park, Ill., to assist with the purchase of digital measuring tools.
  • The FIRST™ Robotics Team 2725, the Ice Princesses, an all-girls robotics team at Orr Academy High School in Chicago.
  • The FIRST™ Robotics Team 135, the Black Knights from Penn High School, Mishawaka, Ind.
  • The FIRST™ Robotics Team 4292, the PorterBots from Lockport, Ill.
  • The FIRST™ Robotics Team 111, the WildStangs representing District 214 in Illinois.
  • The HAWKS Engineering Underwater ROV Team at Hoffman Estates High School (District 211), Hoffman Estates, Ill.
  • The VEX Robotics Team from Woodstock High School (District 200), Woodstock, Ill.
  • SparkShop, a non-profit organization serving 4th and 5th grade STEM students in Chicago Public Schools.
  • Additional programs will be identified as Miles For Manufacturing continues through March.

The Miles For Manufacturing event will run through March 2021. AMT and IMTS will continue to seek additional schools and teams to support. For more information and to register, visit https://www.imts.com/spark/5KRun.html.

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