Career Corner

Manufacturing 2021 - 2022

Imagine Your Future in Manufacturing

Made in Minnesota
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Myths of Manufacturing

There are a lot of myths about careers in manufacturing. Take a look at the video below to find out the truth behind some of those misconceptions!
5 Myths about Manufacturing Careers

Manufacturing Facts for South Central & Southwest Minnesota

  • There are approximately 32,304 manufacturing jobs in South Central & Southwest MN
  • Manufacturing provides higher wage employment opportunities with an average annual wage of $51,948
  • High Demand jobs in Manufacturing include: Welders, Industrial Machinery Mechanics, First-Line Supervisors, Industrial Engineering Technicians, Machinists, Mechanical Engineering Technicians, Team Assemblers and many more.
  • Manufacturers also employ several other occupational groups such sales, information technology, office and administrative support and transportation and material moving.

Check out Manufacturing Infographics to learn more about Manufacturing Careers.

South Central Tour of Manufacturing

This annual event gives students, job seekers and the general public an opportunity to learn about what is being manufactured in their local communities and the exciting career opportunities available. South Central Tour of Manufacturing will be available in a virtual and in person format October 2021.

More details about the South Central Tour of Manufacturing will be communicated to your local high school. You can also check out South Central Tour of Manufacturing Facebook page or website to learn more and see videos from last year.

This video shows you the role of manufacturing in America's Favorite Pastime right here in Minnesota!

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Learn More about Manufacturing Careers

Minnesota State Advanced Manufacturing Center of Excellence provides great resources regarding career opportunities in Manufacturing. This career assessment survey will guide you in what manufacturing career might be right for you.

Take a look at these pages for videos and more information on welding, machine tool, mechanical design, engineering technology, robotics & automation and manufacturing support along with college programs available.

Understanding the Manufacturing Career Pathway

You can start your career at any point on the career ladder. When you are ready, you can continue your education without repeating work you have already completed. A common scenario is:

  1. Take the foundational and common core courses at a two-year college. Earn your certificate/diploma.
  2. Enter the workforce as a technician.
  3. Take liberal arts education and manufacturing specialization courses at a two-year college (may be different colleges). Earn your A.A.S. (Associates Degree) and advance.
  4. Earn your B.A.S. (Bachelor's Degree) at University.
  5. Advance to an engineering or management position.
  6. Pursue a M.B.A. (Master's Degree) to continue your education and your career.
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Women in Manufacturing

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Manufacturing pays 7% more than all other industries

however only 1 in 3 manufacturing jobs are held by women.

Please encouraged women and girls to consider

the many great opportunities in manufacturing.

Women In Manufacturing | Minnesota Manufactured


My name is Bailey, and I am just finishing my first semester in the Machine Tool Technology program at Ridgewater College.

What made you interested in working in manufacturing
I worked on a farm for some time and saw how they made things to keep their farming operation running. In addition, I worked as a janitor in a cabinet making shop and saw CNC routers at work. I like the hands-on environment and would like to run the CNCs.

How did you make the decision to pursue your education and career in manufacturing?
I knew people that were CNC machinists, and I liked the idea of doing what they described because I really enjoy hands-on work. My brother-in-law is a CNC machinist. He was telling my husband what a great career it is, and they helped me to decide to try it.

What do you enjoy about working in manufacturing?
I like having to be precise in hitting the numbers and making functional parts from raw materials. It gives me a sense of accomplishment.

What makes you happy and energized?
I love learning new things and accomplishing tasks, and I get to do that all of the time in the shop.

Anything else you’d like to add?
The second semester students have been very helpful in giving me good advice to complete my projects and perform machining operations correctly.

Source: Minnesota Manufactured,

Job Interview Tips

Interviewing can be an intimidating process whether you're interviewing for you first job or you're seasoned worker. The best way to ensure success on your interview is to BE PREPARED. You may possess the skills for the job, but if you're not prepared for the interview the job offer may go to another candidate. The following video gives some tips on making a great impression in and interview.

Ultimate Job Interview Guide - What to Expect Plus Top 6 Tips

Still nervous about interviewing for that dream job? Click below to find out more tips on interviewing and some of the Common Interview Questions!

Upcoming Career Events

Tour of Manufacturing provides students, job seekers and community members the opportunity to tour and learn about manufacturing business and manufacturing careers in the local area. Tour of Manufacturing will be held October 7th and 9th, 2021. This event will be held with in person and virtual options.

Construct Tomorrow is an interactive career fair that features construction trades will be held on November 17, 2021 in Mankato.
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Career Connections Series: Engineering and Energy

Fall 2021 Series

Sessions #1: Tuesday, October 26th | 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Sessions #2: Tuesday, November 9th | 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Sessions #3: Tuesday, November 23rd | 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM

A primary objective of the Engineering Machine Design Contest is to inspire an interest in engineering and related career pathways. The Career Connections Series serves that purpose, creating awareness of careers related to the year’s theme, as well as proving inspiration for Engineering Machine Design Contest teams as they work on their machine builds.

During the Career Connections Series, engineers and STEM professionals share about their career field, how they chose that career path, and what they enjoy about their careers. Students will have the opportunity to ask the professionals questions about their careers or anything related to the concept or construction of their chain reaction machine that the professional may help to provide insight on.

Students do not need to be part of an Engineering Machine Design Team to participate in the Career Connections Series. Everyone is welcome to join! Everyone is welcome to join!

Click here to learn more and to register for the free webinars.

South Central Workforce Council

Develop and Maintain a Quality Workforce for South Central Minnesota

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