Skilled to Work: Middle school students learn technical skills at camp

The students are working with Linn-Benton Community College instructors to learn everything from welding, computer-aided design, and drafting, even making and programming robots.

Posted: Jul. 9, 2018 5:25 PM
Updated: Jul. 10, 2018 8:11 AM

ALBANY, Ore. -- Forty middle school students from Linn and Benton counties are spending the week designing and building during this year’s “Think it! Make it! Manufacturing Camp.”

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The students are working with Linn-Benton Community College instructors to learn everything from welding, computer-aided design, and drafting, even making and programming robots.

“We got to build an airplane on the computer, and the instructor gave us step-by-step on how to build a mold of one from there and that was pretty fun,” said camper Brianna Wrightson.

It’s the third year of the camp which is a partnership with LBCC and the Albany Area Chamber of Commerce Pipeline Program. Organizers hope the students leave inspired to work towards a career that is in high demand and offers high pay.

“They can make different decisions in high school that they may not have made like wanting to take a welding class or some kind of machining class or an engineering class,” said Josefine Fleetwood of the Albany Area Chamber of Commerce. “This is opening up the doors for their future so they can have some exploration going.”

The four-day camp ends Thursday. This year’s camp has a record number of students and organizers say they’ve seen more and more students getting interested.

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