By Doug Hughes
Just one day after Milpitas Unified School District made national headlines when U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos came calling, a group of students from Calaveras and Milpitas High Schools participated in an event that Milpitas Economic Development Director Edesa Bitbadal dubbed “The First Annual” Milpitas Manufacturing Day.
It was like three field trips in one, as 50 eager students boarded a bus to visit three Milpitas corporations that practice advanced manufacturing techniques right here in our own city.
Pictured below, the first stop on the tour was KLA-Tencor, the leading provider of process control and yield management solutions, where students gowned up from head to toe before entering the company’s clean room.
From there, students headed to Flex Manufacturing, where they learned about wearable technology, reliability testing, and additive manufacturing before grabbing lunch.
The tour concluded at Cordis, a firm that is part of Cardinal Health Company. They are the worldwide leader in the development and manufacturing of interventional vascular technology, with a more than 50-year history of delivering pioneering products to treat millions of patients.
During the Q&A period at Cordis, students asked probing questions about the company’s products used in vascular surgery, such as:
• Do the stents rust? (No, because of the special metal that is used.)
• What do your customers tell you they want to see as future products? (They’d like to see us invent stents that are not metal, that dissolve in the body.)
• Does your robotic manufacturing line take away people’s jobs? (No, because we need people to program and run the robots—and there are many intricate moves that can be done much better by humans.)
As the “icing on top” of a wonderful day, an ice cream truck showed up to deliver sundaes and hand-dipped cones to all the participants, courtesy of the City of Milpitas Office of Economic Development and their Director Edesa Bitbadal. Judging by the smiling faces—and the fact that Bitbadal was already referring to the event as “The First Annual” Milpitas Manufacturing Day—it was an event that we can look forward to again next year!