From the Executivev Director's Desk: No Teacher Left Behind

FLATE tries to work diligently to be sure students are exposed to and learn about Florida’s
great manufacturing industry and the great careers pathways that they can follow right in their own community, or anywhere across the globe. But it typically takes more than one encounter or one experience. How do we extend and deepen the impact of a “Made in Florida” Industry tour, or summer robotic camp experience? How can we make relevant career and job information integral part of student learning? It’s not unexpected, but many teachers do not much about our industry sector, nor about the lucrative and exciting technical careers in manufacturing. A workshop can be a good beginning, providing a spark of interest, the beginning of a passion. But a workshop is not typically enough for teachers to bring the materials to life in a classroom. To provide more opportunities for teachers to teach each other and collaborate, FLATE is working to re-activate FAITE, (Florida Association of Industrial Technical Education), a division of FACTE, the Florida Association of Career and Technical Education (FACTE). FLATE, together with the Florida Department of Education Adult and Career Education (FLDOE) is providing foundational support for building a collaborative learning community. Such a “Community of Practice” have three simple components:
  • a common goal (enhanced student learning)
  • shared time (regular in person and/or virtual collaborative meeting spaces), and 
  • passion for the focus of the community
As an infant organization, FAITE’s goal will be just that, to build a Community of Practice that
will sustain itself with the passion of its members. Keeping it simple is important so that the community can focus on its passion and not on maintaining the infrastructure of the group itself. With regular opportunities for industrial technical educators to come together in person and virtually, FAITE aims to build capacity and confidence in participants, provide a platform to share promising practices, finding solutions, and voicing common concerns. Working in isolation can be tough, and can be frustrating and demoralizing in the world of frequent changes in policy and processes. Working together with our peers, sharing experiences in a collaborative environment is invigorating. FLATE strongly encourages educators to join us and the FL DOE to participate in FAITE. Reasons and incentives to join include, but are not limited to:
  • Advance your career
  • Advocate
  • Get Legislative Updates
  • Connect with Industry to
  • Lead
  • Learn
  • Network
  • Share Ideas
  • Sharpen Skills 
For more information on FAITE and/or technical and industrial education throughout Florida 
visit the FAITE website, or contact Alan Lynch, president of FAITE at, and Dr. Marilyn Barger, Executive Director of FLATE at barger@fl-ate.orgI now invite you to enjoy the stories in the September issue of the FLATE Focus. Our primary efforts in the next month, or two will be focused on MFG Day/Month. We invite All across Florida to celebrate and participate in the various tours and events that have been planned starting October 7 through the end of the month. As always jot down your thoughts and comments under each of the stories in the blog, or contact us and follow us across our social networking platforms on Facebook, connect with us on LinkedIn, or Tweet us @Made_InFlorida using the Hastag of the Month #FLMFGMonth16 and at #MFGday16.

Statewide Industry Tours & Events Planned for 2016 Manufacturing Day/Month. Make Florida #1 Again!

October 7 is the official kick off for 2016 Manufacturing Day, and Florida is poised to celebrate
MFG Day/Month in a BIG way this October. Manufacturers, School Districts, Regional Manufacturers Associations, and hundreds of students, parents, and teachers throughout Florida are gearing to participate in the “Made in Florida” industry tours for 2016 Manufacturing Day/Month. Counties across the state are also set to issue proclamations marking October 7 as the official kick-off date for Manufacturing Day/Month. Additionally, several colleges and manufacturers will be hosting open houses on site with other statewide events planned throughout the month!

2016 is once again projected to be another banner year in Florida Manufacturing. “FLATE’s manufacturing day strategy and cohesive partnerships with regional organizations across the state has helped build an effective model that has over the years enabled greater involvement and statewide participation” said Dr. Marilyn Barger, executive director of FLATE. Even as old partners are empowered and have branched out independently on their own to host MFG Day/Month tours and events, there are new companies that have joined hands to make Florida Number #1 again. This strategy, Barger states, has also empowered many regional manufacturers associations across the state to take a leading role in implementing a customized, regional strategy for manufacturing day/month that has strengthened industry-education ties.

Outlined below are a list of industry tours that have been finalized so far in the greater Tampa Bay region that includes: Hillsborough, Pinellas, Polk, Manatee and Sarasota counties. 

Industry Tour
MFG Day Team Coordinators
Hillsborough County
Cott Beverages Inc., Southern Manufacturing Technologies, SIGNSTAR, Measurement Supply Company, Somatron, EMS-USA, Tampa Bay Steel, Pro-Tools
Marilyn Barger,
Janice Mukhia.

Bay Area Manufacturers Association
Becky Burton,
Rick Concotelli, 

Upper Tampa Bay Manufacturers Association
Jerry Custin,

School District of Hillsborough County

Pinellas County
Hydro-Dyne, Lockheed Martin, Sign Age, Monin, Molex, Lockheed Martin, Honeywell, American Tool & Mold, Conmed, Mastercut Tool Corp., Bausch & Lomb (Clearwater), H & S Swansons’ Tool Co. 

Bay Area Manufacturers Association
Becky Burton,

Upper Tampa Bay Manufacturers Association

Pinellas County School District
Mark Hunt,
Greg Taylor,
Marty Giancola,
Bob Hawkins,

Marilyn Barger,
Janice Mukhia.

Polk County
JC Machine, Inc., Packaging Corporation of America (PCA), Kegel, Inc., Rockford-Ettco Procunier, Coca-Cola, Givaudan Flavors Corp., Pepperidge Farm, MaxPak, ITW Professional

Polk State College
Christopher Yannes,
Howard Drake,

South West Florida
Sarasota and Manatee Counties
The Cavanaugh Company-Black Diamond Strings, PGT Industries, KHS USA, Inc.,

Danielly Orozco,

Sarasota County School District

Manatee County School District

Many regions across Florida are still in the process of setting up “Made in Florida” tours for Manufacturing Day/Month; FLATE will be updating this list on a continuous basis and posting it on the Made in Florida site at So stay tuned for news and updates on tours and events in your region, or contact one of the MFG Day Coordinators in your region listed below:

MFG Day Team Coordinators
Alachua County

Gainesville Chamber of Commerce
Baker & Columbia Counties
Florida TRADE at Florida Gateway College
Margaret Lee,
John Piersol,
North East Florida
Duval, St. John, Clay, Nassau
First Coast Manufacturers Association
Sherri Mitchell,

FL TRADE at Florida State College at Jacksonville
Michael Collins.
North West Florida
Escambia, Santa Rosa, Walton, Okaloosa, Jackson, Calhoun, Bay & Gulf Counties
Northwest Florida Manufacturers Council
Cindy Anderson,

Florida Heartland
Highlands County

Sebring Airport Authority
Beverly Glarner,

South West Florida
Lee County

Southwest Regional Manufacturers Association
Max Dean,

Polygon Solutions

Capital Region
Leon, Wakulla, Madison, & Gadsden Counties
Tallahassee Community College
Rick Frazier,
Marion County Region
Marion and Citrus Counties

Marion Schools

Marion Regional Manufacturers Association
Rob Adamiak,

Central Florida
Orange, Brevard, Lake, Seminole & Osceola Counties
Manufacturers Association of Central Florida
Amanda Marcusky,
Sherry Reeves,
Kenneth Bush,
Timothy Burdette,

South East Florida
Palm Beach & Broward Counties

Atlantic Technical College
Kevin Finan,

South Florida Manufacturers Association
June Wolfe,

HOERBIGER Corporation of America, Inc.

Pasco Hernando Counties

Pasco Hernando State College
Margie Burnham,
Jessica Ball,

Tom Mudano,
Jady Vargas,
Alissa Bosworth,

Following up on the successful model that FLATE has established over the years, FLATE will once again be surveying statewide industry hosts, educators and students who participate in this year’s “Made in Florida” industry tours for 2016 Manufacturing Day/Month. Post event surveys will be tabulated by FLATE and shared with statewide partners and stakeholders. FLATE will also help connect regional groups together, and will distribute MFG Day T-shirts, provide educator resources, write/publish/distribute and report on MFG Day/month related news, and compile all student, educator, host survey data.

To support students’ and educators’ learning and engagement in manufacturing, FLATE has 

also developed an extensive array of resources specifically designed for industry, educators, or anyone interested in MFG Day/Month. A list of these comprehensive (free) resources are listed on the Florida MFG Day/Month page at There is even a 2016 Manufacturing Day in Florida poster that teachers can use as a curriculum tool and/or to decorate their classroom. To access these resources, visit the FLATE’s Wiki at: and

If you would like to be connected with a regional manufacturers’ association to discuss additional outreach activities for students in your community, contact Dr. Marilyn Barger at For tours in Sarasota and Manatee counties and “Made in Florida” lesson plans for manufacturing day contact Danielly Orozco, Associate Director of at For information on tours for Hillsborough & Pinellas counties contact Janice Mukhia, FLATE outreach/project manager at

We look forward to working with each of you and making it another successful 2016 MFG Day/Month! Let’s make Florida #1 Again!