“What’s So Cool About Manufacturing®” Announces 2023 Berks Schuylkill Awards

March 21, 2023 at 8:05 pm
Contact: Kim Plyler


“What’s So Cool About Manufacturing®” Announces 2023 Berks Schuylkill Awards
Online Votes Tally 190,554 and 1,000 People Attended Downtown Reading Celebration

READING, PA – MARCH 21, 2023 Manufacturers Resource Center (MRC) is proud to announce the award recipients for the What’s So Cool About Manufacturing® Berks Schuylkill Student Video Contest awards, which featured 27 regional middle schools and manufacturers. The ceremony was held Tuesday, March 21, 2023 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Reading, with 1,000 people in attendance.

Over a three-day voting period, the contest, which featured two-minute videos produced by each student team, received 190,554 votes. The video with the most votes received the “Viewers Choice Award.” Student videos were also reviewed by a panel of judges for awards in ten other categories, including Outstanding Career Pathway and Outstanding Creativity.

Karen Buck - Director, Workforce Initiatives - MRC

“Seven years ago, we expanded the What’s So Cool contest to the Berks Schuylkill region,” says Karen Buck, Director, Workforce Initiatives at MRC. “We are thrilled to have had another strong season with great community support, 27 teams who raised awareness about cool career opportunities right here in our region. This year, we proudly announce all previous area voting records were shattered, showing the increased interest in the program throughout the community. Great job, students!”

The 2023 video contest award winners are:

  1. OUTSTANDING OVERALL: Conrad Weiser Middle School/John F. Martin & Sons, LLC​
  2. OUTSTANDING EDITING: D.H.H. Lengel Middle School/Hexcel Corporation​
  3. OUTSTANDING CREATIVITY: Kutztown Area Middle School/Easypak
  4. OUTSTANDING COOL: Oley Valley Middle School/Unique Snacks​
  5. TIE – OUTSTANDING TEAM SPIRIT: Tri-Valley Jr./Sr. High School/Keystone Potato Products, LLC
  6. OUTSTANDING TEAM SPIRIT: Exeter Township Junior High School/Misco Products Corporation​
  7. OUTSTANDING EDUCATIONAL VALUE: Wilson West Middle School/Cambridge-Lee Industries​
  8. OUTSTANDING VIDEOGRAPHY: Governor Mifflin Middle School/Viwinco, Inc.​
  9. VIEWERS CHOICE: Blue Mountain Middle School/Clearly Clean​
  10. OUTSTANDING OUTREACH PLAN: Boyertown Middle School West/R. M. Palmer Company​
  11. OUTSTANDING CAREER PATHWAY: Minersville Jr./Sr. High School/ Prysmian Group – Schuylkill Haven​
  12. OUTSTANDING CTE STORY: North Schuylkill Jr./Sr. High School/​Ashland Technologies, Inc.

Visit WhatsSoCool.org for more information and follow on social media @WSCMBerksSch.

The program’s continued success and growth are attributed to the efforts the teachers and students have put forth in the community since its inception. MRC and its partners Kutztown Small Business Development Center, eMediaWorks, Sahl Communications, Inc., and many community sponsors remain committed to the sustainability of the program.

Educational media resources, GoPro Camera kits, professional media training, materials, and project costs were funded and made possible by the following:

Technology Sponsor: Berks County Workforce Development Board  

Platinum Sponsors: Berks County Industrial Development Authority, Customers Bank, EMD Electronics, Manufacturers Resource Center, Kutztown Small Business Development Center, Reading Truck, Univest Financial, and Viwinco, Inc.

Gold Sponsors: American Crane & Equipment Corporation, Carpenter Technology Corporation, County of Berks, eMediaWorks, Hydro, M&T Bank, Members 1st FCU, Michael Foods, Mitsubishi Chemical Group, PhytogenX, Reading Bakery Systems, Reading Bearing & Drive Solutions, Sahl Communications, Inc., Tompkins Community Bank, Unique Snacks, and Weidenhammer 

Silver Sponsors: Aerotek, Arkema, Ashland Technologies, Inc., Blaschak Anthracite, Cambridge-Lee Industries LLC, Cardinal Systems, Inc., East Penn Manufacturing Company, Fromm Electric, Greater Reading Chamber Alliance, Masser Family of Companies, Materion, Prysmian Group, Reading Area Community College, R. M. Palmer Company, Sweet Street Desserts, Inc., and Visions Federal Credit Union

Bronze Sponsors: Berks Career & Technology Center, Berks County Intermediate Unit, F.M. Brown’s Sons, Inc., King’s Real Estate Development Co., Pladis, Reading Muhlenberg Career & Technology Center, Schuylkill Chamber of Commerce, Schuylkill County Intermediate Unit, Schuylkill Technology Center, and US Anodize

Media Sponsors: BCTV, Lamar, Lehigh Valley Business Journal, Reading Eagle, and WFMZ 69 News

Visit WhatsSoCool.org for more information and follow on social media @WSCMBerksSch.

About What’s So Cool About Manufacturing®:
Developed by Manufacturers Resource Center (MRC), the WSCM program is a video-based educational tool that increases awareness of career paths and technology in manufacturing through “peer marketing” (kids telling kids what’s so cool about manufacturing jobs). The contest is showcased on the What’s So Cool Website and shared nationally through the Manufacturing Institute and the Manufacturing Extension Partnership platforms. The MRC community career awareness program has expanded across the Commonwealth and the country.

The “What’s So Cool About Manufacturing®” comprehensive manufacturing video library was created by MRC and WSCM PA in 2020 and funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (PADCED). The interactive library of the who’s who in Pennsylvania manufacturing, garnered from the yearly regional contests, is intended to serve as an educational resource for anyone curious about manufacturing in Pennsylvania. The library can be accessed through the WhatsSoCool.org website and contains 1000 student videos featuring over 600 Pennsylvania manufacturers.

This contest allows students to connect with local manufacturers, document their experiences, and present them in an educational and “cool” way. The contest was created to generate excitement that draws students towards manufacturing career paths, and CTE and STEM education. Original funding for “What’s So Cool About Manufacturing” was furnished by a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (PADCED).

About Manufacturers Resource Center:
For 33 years, the Manufacturers Resource Center (MRC) has helped small and mid-sized manufacturers become more competitive, adopt lean and agile processes, strategically grow their companies, and invest more effectively in their existing human capital. MRC is a nonprofit organization partially funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s NIST-MEP program and the State of Pennsylvania’s Department of Community and Economic Development. MRC is dedicated to creating jobs and economic opportunities in eastern Pennsylvania’s Berks, Carbon, Lehigh, Northampton, and Schuylkill counties. Learn more at www.mrcpa.org.                                  


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