Lehigh Valley Skill Up workforce project launches the official Dream It. Do It. PA website, which will host student videos from the What’s So Cool About Manufacturing? campaign and more.

The Lehigh Valley Skill Up partners announced today the premiere of their new Dream It. Do It. Pennsylvania website and Viewers Choice Award voting for their student video contest.

The Dream It. Do It. Pennsylvania website at www.dreamitdoitpa.com serves as the Lehigh Valley Skill Up program’s public platform and provides interesting insights and powerful resources about manufacturing careers for students, parents, educators, and manufacturers. Dream It. Do It. is a national grassroots initiative by The Manufacturing Institute in Washington, D.C. Its purpose is to give community groups access to a national platform that promotes manufacturing careers.

Led by the Manufacturers Resource Center (MRC) in Bethlehem, Pa., Lehigh Valley Skill Up is a workforce development project intended to raise awareness of manufacturing careers and their required skills for students in grades K-8, their adult family members, and educators. Additional Lehigh Valley Skill Up core partners are the Da Vinci Science Center (DSC) in Allentown, Pa.; the Lehigh Career and Technical Institute (LCTI) in Schnecksville, Pa.; and the Lehigh Valley Workforce Investment Board (LVWIB) in Allentown, Pa.

Lehigh Valley Skill Up’s student video contest – titled What’s So Cool About Manufacturing? – began in Sept. 2013. Student teams from 16 public school districts were given digital video cameras; provided training by eMediaWorks of Center Valley, Pa.; and matched with manufacturing companies. Each team was asked to produce a short video showing what is so cool about manufacturing careers at these companies.

The video contest culminates with an awards event at the Da Vinci Science Center on Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014. Judges will give awards in a variety of categories. The most outstanding student videos will be posted on the Dream It. Do It. Pennsylvania website, and fans can vote for their favorites between Feb. 24-26, 2014. The video that receives the most online votes wins the contest’s Viewers Choice Award.

Video contest sponsors include Air Products; King Spry Herman Freund & Faul, LLC; Embassy Bank; National Penn Bank; PPL Electric Utilities; Concannon Miller Business Consultants; Northampton Community College; and Hampson Mowrer Kreiz (HMK) Insurance.

Development of the Lehigh Valley Skill Up project began in 2011 through the Da Vinci Science Center’s Summer of Manufacturing initiative – during which the science center partnered with companies, educators, and community leaders to devise strategies for growing the manufacturing workforce. The Lehigh Valley Skill Up project is funded by a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED).