To kick off National Manufacturing Month, Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts recently toured Reinke Manufacturing in Deshler, Neb. Chris Roth, Reinke president, welcomed the governor and other state and local officials to the company's headquarters.
"We're very proud to have the governor here today to talk about manufacturing in Nebraska and see all that we're doing at Reinke to make our people and economy stronger," Roth said. "We're also excited to talk about our efforts to support youth education and enhance opportunities for students interested in the many different types of jobs that manufacturing offers them."
While touring Reinke's facilities, Ricketts saw demonstrations on robotic welding stations and world-class galvanizing. Ricketts discussed Reinke's efforts to help enhance manufacturing in the state.
"Reinke makes significant investments in both their people and community," he said. "Not only do they create jobs, they provide opportunities for students to learn about manufacturing in laboratories at local schools. Reinke has also won two grants for our Developing Youth Talent Initiative, which is further evidence of their commitment to grow manufacturing in Nebraska."
The company has been awarded Nebraska Developing Youth Talent Initiative grants for two consecutive years. In July, the state announced Reinke would receive a $22,000 grant to partner with local public schools served by Educational Service Unit No. 5 to encourage students to explore careers in manufacturing, information technology, and math- or science-related fields. The funds will go toward creating a mobile learning lab that will reach up to 850 students through the Exposing Kids to Career Opportunities program.
More than 11 years ago, Reinke started welding programs for high school students in Deshler; Geneva , Neb.; and Belleville, Kan., to provide hands-on learning opportunities. For the past two years, Reinke has sponsored the Deshler robotics team that advanced to the First Tech World Championships in Detroit in 2019.
The company also provides adult education for welding at Southeast Community College and has worked alongside the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture in Curtis to develop its Irrigation Technician Concentration and Certification Program.
Also participating in the tour were Tony Goins, incoming director of economic development for the state of Nebraska; Bryan Slone, president of the Nebraska Chamber of Commerce; and Tom Brandt, Nebraska state senator.
During the visit, Ricketts also recognized firms who helped contribute to the state's three consecutive Governor's Cup wins. For the third year in a row, Nebraska received the award from Site Selection Magazine for achieving the most economic development projects per capita of any state in the nation.
"Each October, we celebrate Manufacturing Month to highlight companies making world-class products right here in Nebraska," Ricketts said. "Manufacturing is the state's second-largest industry. We've made investments to connect Nebraskans with the skills needed to excel in great manufacturing opportunities."
One in 10 jobs in Nebraska is in manufacturing, with 1,990 manufacturing firms employing more than 100,000 Nebraskans in the state.
Thousands of companies around the country will be celebrating manufacturing career opportunities during October. For information, visit mfgday.com.