RJG, Inc. partnered with Key Up Education to host two educational summer camps for local science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) students on June 10 and 17, 2017. Twenty-five students from four local schools participated in the two-hour camps to learn more about how various aspects of science are used in a real-world environment.
The camp took place at RJG, Inc.’s North Carolina training facility, The Hangar. Marty Key, Consultant/Trainer at RJG, worked alongside his wife Mary Key, local teacher and founder of Key Up Education, to teach students grades two through six about melt temperatures, injection molding processes and the various phases plastic goes through when melted and cooled.
Middle school and high school students participated as mentors in order to get hands-on experience, assist the younger students and help develop future classes geared toward older students. They also earned volunteer hours that they can add to their college applications.
Students were able to hold and look at various parts of the injection molding machine, feed plastic pellets into the hopper and watch as the machine produced parts. After camp, the parents visited the lab so that their children could show them around the machines and share with them what they learned.
"It was very cool to look inside the machines and then see how they work,” said Tannin, a student. “It was fun to hold the screw and then to see the plastic ejected from the machine. I really had a great time and learned a lot."
"Thank you to Mary and Marty Key for inspiring kids in science/technology/engineering/math,” said Julie, a parent. “Kaitlyn has a new-found love because of getting to participate in things like this with people like you."
“The collaborative effort we have experienced with RJG has provided students with incredible hands-on exposure to all areas of STEM in the real-world,” said Mary Key. “The students have truly enjoyed being able to see where many of the concepts they have learned in the classroom are put into action.”
There is currently a professional development group in the works to have teachers from various schools come to RJG, Inc.’s lab and see how they can incorporate the hands-on science of injection molding into their classroom. RJG, Inc. and Key Up Education hope to grow their learning initiative and offer it to more students in the future—both locally and remotely. Their hope is that more companies will consider being a part of this opportunity.
About Key Up Education:
Key Up Education is a North Carolina-based initiative that focuses on empowering grade-school students to explore the world of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) through hands-on, real-world experiences.