Tri-State MakerFest draws students to OLC to learn about available careers

QUINCY (WGEM) – The Great River Economic Development Foundation hosted the fourth annual MakerFest on Thursday morning at the Oakley-Lindsay Center in Quincy.

The event highlighted National Manufacturing Month, which is in October.

Dozens of companies came from across the Tri-States and set up display booth for students to have the chance to ask questions about future local career opportunities.

GREDF Director of Workforce Development Angela Caldwell highlighted how Tri-State junior and senior high school students get to live locally after graduation.

“The different things that they can do right here at home – they don’t have to go to another state or a larger city,” Caldwell said. “They can stay here around family and get a very good head-of-household job.”

More than 250 students from 16 schools across the region attended MakerFest, eager to learn more about what careers the Tri-States has to offer.

John Wood Community College Dean of External Relations Tracy Orne said the students who attended MakerFest already have their foot in the door when inquiring about potential career opportunities.

“Employers come to our classes while students are learning to recruit them, so today is a first job interview, I would say,” Orne said. “Saying, ‘Hey, I’m going to go to John Wood and get this training, what kind of jobs might you have for me when I complete this?’”

Upon graduation, they can seek local full-time employment in fields like manufacturing, logistics and other skilled trades with just one to three years of training.

Copyright 2023 WGEM. All rights reserved.