This fall the Lowcountry Graduate Center partnered with the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) to secure Governor Nikki Haley’s proclamation of September 28 through October 2 as Manufacturing Week in South Carolina in recognition of the important role manufacturing plays in our economy.
The manufacturing industry is one of the fastest growing employment sectors in South Carolina, representing 16.2% of the state’s GDP with record exports reaching $30.9 billion in 2014. This reflects thousands of new jobs throughout SC in advanced manufacturing, supported by engineering services, software development, and information technology in areas such as supply chain management.
“Our state’s ability to provide affordable, accessible, and quality education in support of careers in manufacturing is essential to the continued economic growth and vitality of South Carolina,” explained Dr. Nancy Muller, Executive Director of the Lowcountry Graduate Center. “We greatly appreciate the Governor’s recognition of the achievements and opportunities that exist in manufacturing in South Carolina and her enduring support of our state’s workforce development.”
To celebrate Manufacturing Week in the Lowcountry, the Lowcountry Graduate Center hosted an Open House on Monday, September 28 from 6 – 8 pm for individuals to learn about relevant graduate education that our state’s top universities offer right here in North Charleston. Program representatives from Clemson University, the University of South Carolina, The Citadel, and the College of Charleston were present to explain how working professionals can advance their careers with further study in Mechanical Engineering, Engineering Management, Project Management, or Computer & Information Sciences.
In celebration of the contributions of the manufacturing sector and its expanding opportunities in the state, the Lowcountry Graduate Center also hosted a Manufacturing Day Career Expo on Wednesday, September 30 from 4:30 – 6:00 p.m., in collaboration with SME Chapter 430. This free event introduced area middle and high school students to the benefits provided by a career in manufacturing. The program featured speakers from Cummins, Boeing, Bosch, and Ingevity, representing major manufacturing investments with operations in the Tri-county area.
On Thursday, October 1, SME Chapter 430, in concert with the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce, provided speakers to four area high schools: Wando, West Ashley, Goose Creek, and Summerville. These schools are part of the Chamber’s “Edge Academy” program, supported by the local SME Chapter 430. The speakers from Bosch, Cummins, CR Bard and SCMEP encouraged students to consider pursuing future manufacturing jobs in Metro Charleston as the industry continues to expand in the area.
The last week in September was chosen to recognize Manufacturing Week in South Carolina in support of National Manufacturing Day on October 2, which is a joint effort produced by manufacturing organizations across the United States.
About the Lowcountry Graduate Center
The Lowcountry Graduate Center was created in 2001 as a consortium of the College of Charleston, The Citadel and the Medical University of South Carolina. These founding institutions, along with the University of South Carolina and Clemson University, now offer a variety of graduate degrees and certificates at the Lowcountry Graduate Center. Conveniently located in North Charleston, the mission of the Lowcountry Graduate Center is to expand opportunities for graduate education and related experiential learning in a variety of disciplines that address the economic, business development, and social needs of the Lowcountry. The Lowcountry Graduate Center shares a facility with the College of Charleston North Campus, which is home to the College’s School of Professional Studies.
About SME Chapter 430
SME connects all those who are passionate about making things that improve our world. As a nonprofit organization, SME has served practitioners, companies, educators, government and communities across the manufacturing spectrum for more than 80 years. Through its strategic areas of events, media, membership, training and development, and the SME Education Foundation, SME is uniquely dedicated to the advancement of manufacturing by addressing both knowledge and skills needed for the industry. For more information about the local SME Chapter 430 visit http://i.sme.org/c430/home/.