The Education Connection
Employers who are members of the BCMA enjoy visiting classrooms and talking to students about their companies and the manufacturing industry as a whole. Read about a few of those visits during the 2019-2020 school year.
Throckmorton Collegiate ISD
TCISD students enjoyed a tour at RAM INC. this past week. “I believe students learned a lot and their eyes were opened to what the inside of a real manufacturing plant looks like,” stated Amelia Reeves of the Texas Workforce Systems. “Mr. Richard Williams, RAM CEO, gave the tour himself and shared stories of how some of his employees came to be there, their different educational pathways. He also stated some employees came
on right out of high school and worked their way up through on the job training, and others were top of their class in engineering schools,” said Reeves. Students were able to see different options in the workforce and Williams reiterated, “The most important factors in working your way into a great career is hard work and determination to create your own destiny.” Williams also mentioned the importance of basic concepts students are learning in physics, chemistry, algebra, and geometry, specifically basic
equations, working with polymers, and understanding the space objects fill. Students will be following up in their classes at school to discuss the real work examples. The goal of the trip was to help students see the importance of some of the classes they are taking in high school and how it could apply to their jobs in the future.
“The RAM industry tour was a great experience! It was amazing to see how the RAM industry started small and now oneThrockmorton Student
of the biggest companies to provide Engineered plastic molding and tooling.”
“The RAM Industry Tour was very interesting. There were many different pieces that were being built throughout the whole building. The thing that interested me the most was that you didn’t have to be an engineer to work there. They needed many different people for all kinds of work.”Throckmorton Student
Name: Reagan Berry
Position: Business Education Teacher
School: Wylie High School
In the fall semester Richard Williams, RAM Incorporated’s CEO, spoke to the Entrepreneurship classes at Wylie High School. Mr. Williams provided valuable insight to our 10th‐12th grade students. Students took interest in learning the complexities of the manufacturing industry as well as the depths of the business. Mr. Williams was able to capture the attention of the students when they learned that RAM, Inc produced parts for the United States Military. They were fascinated by learning how a little ole company in Cisco, TX gained such a huge contract and now plays a role in protecting our country. This bit of information opened conversations regarding building relationships, customer service, and competitive advantages. Mr. Williams made personal connections with students who showed particular interest in the industry. Those connections have far‐reaching impacts as students network and plan for their future careers. Because of his outreach to students, we’re proud to have a Wylie High School Entrepreneurship student represent students of the Big Country in the Big Country Manufacturing Alliance. At Wylie High School, we are excited to continue to build a relationship with the BCMA in order to enhance the education and career opportunities for our students.
Author: Richard Williams, CEO, Ram, Inc.
- About Richard Williams
- Aerospace and Defense Manufacturing, Cisco, Texas
- West Central Texas Workforce board member
- Big Country Manufacturing Alliance (BCMA) Business to Education Committee Chair
- 40 year business executive – turn around and mergers and acquisitions
The BCMA and the Workforce Career & Education Outreach Program are hoping to engage in a robust dialogue with educators throughout our region. We want to build relationships from which we can inspire our students to become their best, to realize the incredible gifts they hold within themselves, and to help them navigate the next chapters of their lives. In some ways, parents hand their children to teachers when they are 5 years old and then teachers hand them to businesses when they are 18. All three of us- parents, teachers, & business leaders- are entrusted with leading and mentoring these incredible gifts of humanity. I hope we can work together as good stewards of these gifts.
Our students will soon take the next step toward postsecondary education and working careers. Whether postsecondary education is formal or informal, 4 year degree or certificate – this lifetime education is a part of the fabric of successful and personally rewarding lives. As a business leader, my belief is that each person on my team has a unique creative voice that, when encouraged, brings the potential of extraordinary value.
It is often said that manufacturing work is a continual series of problem-solving challenges. Put another way, continual process improvement or innovation and creativity are primary keys to success in manufacturing. We hear statements like, “If it was easy anyone could do it,” or, “mastering the difficult separates us from our competition.” In the manufacturing plant, everyone on the team has the ability to continually improve (innovate) and thereby bring value to all parties including the customer, supplier, shareholder, and each other. As individuals on our team bring creative/innovative value, they find personal satisfaction and financial rewards. The same can be applied to our lives in general. When we engage in a lifetime of continual improvement, we are inspired with hope and fulfil the promise of the gifts we have been given.
Manufacturing in the Big Country is diverse, highly technical, and international in reach and impact. The BCMA offers and participates in student tours (plant visits), student internships, educator externships, and classroom presentations. All of these activities are designed to build relationships and connections and to expose students and educators to world class manufacturing right here in the Big Country. We hope you will reach out to the BCMA to schedule a tour or to invite an executive to present to your class. You and your students may find something different than what you expect!