WASHINGTON, -  Today, The Manufacturing Institute, in partnership with the Student Research Foundation and SkillsUSA, released a report identifying the characteristics of experiences that impact student career choices. The purpose of the survey was to inspire dialogue between parents, educators, counselors and students, with the goal of better aligning programs and services with students’ needs and preparing them for careers ahead.

The study found that 63 percent of students identified their own interests and experiences as having the greatest influence over their career decisions, with parents as the second-largest influence at 32 percent.

“This report confirms for us what drives the career choices of the next generation,” The Manufacturing Institute Executive Director Carolyn Lee said. “To help build the future pipeline of workers, manufacturers need to give students and parents more opportunities to experience innovative, high-tech and exciting modern-day manufacturing.”

“Hearing the voices of students, to learn about their thinking on career paths, is vital to building a bridge to the future workforce,” said Michael Conn, SVP Research, Student Research Foundation. “Our research collaboration with the Manufacturing Institute and SkillsUSA takes an important step in that direction.”

The report also found that 35 percent of students enrolled in CTE have no contact with potential future employers. Knowing that students’ interests and experiences play a crucial role in choosing their career path, they must have frequent and varied exposure to manufacturing. Events such as Manufacturing Day are critical for allowing employers to engage with the local community, create relationships with educators, and showcase the broad range of opportunities available in the modern manufacturing world. With more than 2,800 events happening across the nation throughout the year, manufacturers are inspiring students to get excited about careers in the industry. Visit www.MFGDay.com to find an event near you.

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