On Tuesday, March 6th, 2018, students answered the question, “What’s so cool about manufacturing?”  Created by the Manufacturers Resource Center (MRC) in Allentown, PA in 2013, the “What’s So Cool About Manufacturing” contests draw entries from nearly 200 teams across Pennsylvania. The teams of students and teacher coaches receive camera equipment, software, and professional guidance as they learn to script, record, and edit their video stories. The contest’s objective is to change students’ perceptions about manufacturing careers.  In Greater Reading, we focus on the Career Pathways Model, a model which helps fill our local manufacturing pipeline.  Between these two initiatives, Greater Reading is committed to continued growth and success of our manufacturing industries.  

This contest is sponsored by the MRC as part of a statewide program and Greater Reading is one of the twelve regions in the state who participated. This year there were 29 school districts (an increase of 35% over last year) who competed from the Berks-Schuylkill region. Coupled with these districts were 29 manufacturers, many of whom call Berks County home. Over 750 business leaders, students, companies and school officials attended the celebration and awards ceremony. People were invited to view the videos online and could vote for their favorites. In fact, the voting saw the second highest number of votes in the history of the program across the commonwealth. 124,000 votes were cast in a three day period and 61,000 of those votes were cast in a single day, nearly eclipsing last years total of 65,000 votes. Due to our high level of participation and interest by the school community, we believe that next year, the Berks-Schuylkill region will achieve the status of number one for votes cast in the competition.

Of the 29 manufacturers who participated, 18 are located here, in the Greater Reading area!  Check out the list of top manufacturers in our area here.


Metal Trophy Made by students at local technical school.

2018 What’s so Cool About Manufacturing Trophy created by students at the Berks Career and Technology Center

This year there were ten awards given out for ten different categories.  The awards were created by the Berks Career and Technology Center, one of the great technical schools in our community.

The categories include:

Outstanding Videography: (Tie)

                Tulpehocken – Misco Products Corporation

                Muhlenberg – Cambridge-Lee Industries 

Outstanding Editing

                Hamburg Area – Appeeling Fruits

Outstanding Creativity

                Kutztown Area – PALRAM Americas 

Outstanding Cool

                Daniel Boone – Brentwood Industries 

Outstanding Team Spirit

                Reading Northeast – Rose Corporation

Outstanding Educational Value

                Wilson West – Novipax

Outstanding Career Pathway

                Pottsville Area Lengle – Northeast Prestressed Products

Outstanding Marketing Plan

                Tamaqua Area – Cardinal Systems

Viewers Choice

                Mahanoy Area – Highwood USA  

Outstanding Overall Program

                Schuylkill Haven – Fabcon Precast 


To learn more about this contest and how to get involved for next year, click here