Students Learn About Manufacturing at Honda Canada Manufacturing
Honda Canada Manufacturing (HCM) is working to ensure that students in its community have the opportunity to connect with Honda and the innovation and creativity that is part of manufacturing.
As part of a long-term strategy, HCM has developed its own Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (S.T.E.M) program to illustrate the vast opportunities that exist in manufacturing.
“We want students to feel jazzed about being enrolled in science and technology courses,” says, Sarah Grimes, Recruitment, Group Leader. “We can only dream as big as what we know — our S.T.E.M Day activities bring a broad range of hands-on experiences to life and allow these students to expand their dream potential.”
The genesis of S.T.E.M at HCM however, began with a group of young women engineers passionate about their field and eager to give back. Associate Natalie Prole was integral to the S.T.E.M journey at HCM. “I attended a day like this when I was a kid and it had a huge impact on me,” says Prole.
“It’s so important for students to understand the different industries that exist and seeing someone that they can relate to in that industry is even more important. With that connection they can see themselves in positions that they had never dreamed of.” For Prole, S.T.E.M at HCM is also an amazing way to empower new engineers and interns; to get them involved with the community and showcase their career and their progress.
Recently, 36 girls from seven local schools spent the day with our teams, led by many of our engineers. Susan Kenny, Engine Plant Manager, who has been with Honda for more than 26 years, is a passionate supporter of S.T.E.M.
She kicks off the day by sharing her experiences at Honda. “S.T.E.M does tend to focus on girls, as the statistics bear out that between grade six and high school, girls tend to opt out of science and technology courses,” says Kenny. “We want to show them firsthand what the possibilities are for their future — we think that we have a unique ability to light a spark and keep them engaged in these important areas of study.”
For HCM, ensuring that the company has top talent in the future representative of the community is also very important. Historically, manufacturing hasn’t attracted the diverse talent that helps drive success.
“We have been working to build not only a diverse culture but an inclusive one as well,” says Grimes. “S.T.E.M is just one part of our strategy to ensure we have the very best talent – we need innovative new ideas to power Honda’s future.”