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Building Our Future



A top concern facing DRMA members and the manufacturing industry is the lack of a qualified workforce. DRMA faces this challenge head-on by driving and supporting numerous initiatives to promote careers in manufacturing and align workforce efforts across the region.

MFG day

Manufacturing Day

DRMA is the local organizer for MFG Day, a nationwide event where students tour manufacturing facilities teaching them about careers in the industry.  We’re the most successful MFG Day in the nation.  With support from FASTLANE/MEP.

Click HERE for a list of local tours (sort by Ohio).

Click HERE for virtual tours!

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Mark your calendars for National Manufacturing Day, the first Friday in October!

Are You a Manufacturer?

  • Does your shop show well? Would a 13-year-old walk in your facility and say “Wow, this is cool!”? If so, then consider participating in MFG Day 2019!

    Help expand knowledge about and improve the perception of manufacturing careers and manufacturing’s value to the U.S. economy. This is a nationwide event and a unique opportunity for students, parents, and educators to see contemporary manufacturing in action and ignite their interest in a career in manufacturing.

    Hosting an open house on MFG Day will give you the opportunity to:

    • Inspire a new generation of manufacturers

    • Tell your company’s story

    • Dispel outdated myths about manufacturing

    Sign up HERE to host an open house. Or, CONTACT DRMA for assistance.

    MFG Day is produced by the National Association of Manufacturers and organized locally by DRMA with support from FASTLANE/MEP.

Career Awareness

Career Awareness Events

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DRMA conducts activities with students and educators to expose them to careers in manufacturing.  Activities include exhibits during lunchtime at middle and high schools and at career fairs; speaking in classrooms; and hands-on activities during summer camps and other events.  DRMA volunteers deliver messages about career paths, wage and salary information, and training and education paths.  Partners: FASTLANE/MEP and the Educational Service Centers across the region.

We Need Volunteers

Manufacturers, you can help solve your future workforce shortage by providing a volunteer to work lunchtime career events (called Power Lunches). It takes only a couple of hours and no public speaking is necessary. DRMA staff does the scheduling, the setup, and all the logistics. All volunteers have to do is show up and engage students in conversations about why they like working in manufacturing and, specifically, why they like working for your company! Do you have a young person who might like to talk to students? We need volunteers from every area in the region. Contact Kayla if you would like to volunteer!


Certified Manufacturing Associate Training Program

The Certified Manufacturing Associate short-term, online training program, offered in collaboration with Tooling U-SME, is for your new hires or other employees who have little or no experience in manufacturing so that they are more quickly productive for you. This unregistered apprenticeship program provides associates across most manufacturing occupations with a defined training and development plan that includes technical instruction on a broad range of basic manufacturing concepts, on-the-job training, and mentorship, and aligns with the hallmarks of a high-quality program as outlined by the United States Department of Labor.  DRMA has a grant that will pay the training cost and the credential assessment fee.  Attend an INFO SESSION or contact Kara to learn more.

The CMfgA courses are relevant to a wide range of manufacturing fields, and many of the courses are directly applicable to our environment.  The courses are basic enough to not be overwhelming but in-depth enough to give meaningful insight into the subject.  Competition being human nature, a few of the students have turned this into a competition to get the highest scores. This tells me that they are enjoying it and learning from it.  I see no better way to improve employee knowledge over a range of subjects for the price.

 - Joe LaPointe, Quality Systems Coordinator, Valmac Industries


The WorkAdvance program is designed to create a pipeline of talent for your entry-level manufacturing positions from our region’s untapped workforce.  WorkAdvance is a proven initiative to recruit individuals with no manufacturing experience; it intentionally seeks out those who aren’t currently applying.


We are working with community-based organizations that are recruiting, screening, training, and coaching people to fill your entry-level manufacturing positions.  

Attend a free 30-minute Zoom info session CLICK HERE to learn how you can position your company to interview and hire these candidates.


Learn more about the grant that funds this program HERE.

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Workforce/HR Meet Up

Meet Ups are small discussion groups designed to help members build their peer network with other members who are interested in the same topic area in order to share and learn.  Topics for the Workforce/HR Meet Up include internships and apprenticeships, funding for training, training resources, recruiting methods, assessments, compensation strategies, compliance issues, and others.  Subject matter experts are on hand at each Meet Up. They are free and for members only. LEARN MORE about Meet Ups and why you should attend.

Indusrty Recognized Credentials

Industry-Recognized Credentials

DRMA is working with educators across the region to incorporate industry credentials into their curriculum, as well as with members to promote the value of the credentials.  Credentials include the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council’s (MSSC) Certified Production Technician (CPT); the National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS) credentials; and the American Welding Society’s professional certifications.

What are Manufacturing Industry-Recognized Credentials? And why YOUR company should care.

DRMA members consistently report that their Number 1 concern is that they cannot find workers with the skills required for today’s advanced workplaces. The skills gap is widening as companies scramble to find qualified employees, and new hires who are not the right fit can mean companies losing out after spending hundreds of hours recruiting, onboarding, and training.


The use of manufacturing industry-recognized credentials is one way to help address the skills gap challenge and ensure your workforce is made up of the most qualified employees. Industry credentials ensure that the credential holder has met the industry benchmark for their specific occupational competency. For new hires, industry credentials can be used as screening tools for knowledge, skills, and abilities to do the job well; and for current workers, industry credentials can help bolster their skills and keep them at the top of their trade.


There are many reputable industry-based credentials out there to meet your company’s needs. Some of note include the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council’s (MSSC) Production Technician Certification (CPT); the National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS) credentials; and the American Welding Society’s professional certifications.


Whichever certifications you choose based on your employee skills requirements, your company will be better positioned to identify qualified applicants for open positions and to improve the skills of your existing workforce.


DRMA is working with educators across the region to incorporate industry credentials into their curriculum. Soon, graduates possessing these credentials will be ready for hire.


Want to learn more about Manufacturing Industry-Recognized Credentials? Take a look at our Industry Credentials Blog or contact Kara.

Training Education

Training/Education Program Advisory Committees

DRMA staff and volunteer members serve on advisory committees at high schools and colleges across the region to convey the needs of manufacturers and to ensure their curriculum produces graduates with the skills needed by manufacturers.


Kara for more information or to get involved in any of these initiatives.

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“I really enjoyed the field trip we took for National Manufacturing Day to Dysinger and FC Industries. That day allowed me to see different facilities from small shops to large companies. I now better understand the job requirements needed to be successful.”

- Miami Valley CTC, Precision Machining

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“I like the innovative and creative ways of working with my hands through manufacturing. I see it as a lot more than just machining. Thank you, Stebbins, DRMA, and Mr. Curley for the inspiration and opportunities to learn and advance toward my career.”


- Stebbins High School

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“I was first drawn to manufacturing after seeing a Battle Bots competition at the age of 10. That inspired me to enroll at MVCTC in robotics. This year we toured Dysinger on National Manufacturing Day and I really thought the projects they worked on were very cool. I look forward to using my double engineering degree to solve problems and help others that are less fortunate.”

- Miami Valley CTC, Robotics

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“I enjoy working with my hands as well as my mind. The DRMA workforce internship program is a terrific opportunity to enter manufacturing, work in different areas, and understand the variety of career options that are available before I choose my career direction.”

- Senior at Dayton Christian 

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