Forrest has been working as a Sub Assembly Technician 2 at MPI for the past two years. MPI is the worldwide leader in wax-room equipment and has been involved in the investment casting industry for nearly 50 years. Since Forrest is trained in multiple facets throughout the company his job often varies from day to day. In general, it requires the assembling of components to the standards provided by the engineering department. However, he also enjoys helping out and interacting with other departments whenever possible.
Forrest grew up and attended high school in Hyde Park, NY. While attending FDR High School he took advantage of the local BOCES programs. At the time Forrest showed an interest in auto-mechanics and spent a year attending BOCES for hands-on training. However, his interests were diverse and he also discovered a passion for micro-biology. After high school Forrest decided to explore that interest further at Dutchess Community College. There he got his Associates Degree in General Biology and Chemistry.
After college he tried out several jobs in various industries before starting at MPI. He spent some time working for New York State Parks as well as Home Depot and gained some valuable work experience along the way. During his time at Home Depot he learned how to work his way up within a company. Starting out as a part-time employee pushing carts Forrest quickly made his way into the lumber department working full-time before the end of his probationary period.
When it came time for a career change Forrest learned about MPI from an old friend. Taking from his experience at Home Depot, he was able to quickly move up the ranks at MPI as well. He started in the Box Room cutting holes in the electrical boxes for the wires and buttons to later be input. He was able to move into his current position by offering to help other departments whenever he had down time. The knowledge he gained from working directly with other departments allowed him to cross-train himself and become a more valuable asset to the company.
Working in the manufacturing industry is entirely new to Forrest and he’s gained many new skills. Besides skills though, Forrest told us that he’s also learned that “any one worker, no matter how small, can have an impact throughout the world.” Forrest explained to us that MPI has customers from around the world including some in Ireland, China, Korea, and across the United States. He’s played a role in creating machines that will later go into the aerospace and medical industries to name a few. Forrest takes pride in the fact that his job at MPI can indirectly make an impact on people’s lives internationally.
Forrest found out about the NYS registered apprentice program from his supervisor who strongly encouraged him to register. He officially joined the program in January under the Electro-Mechanical Technician trade. He said that the opportunity to earn a nationally recognized accreditation as a journey level worker is what encouraged him to join and continues to motivate him. Forrest hopes to become more valuable as an employee through the experience he’s gaining as a registered apprentice, and he’s excited about the amount of skills and knowledge he’s gained thus far.
Forrest will also be featured in an upcoming video about careers in manufacturing sponsored by Tompkins Mahopac Bank. The Council of Industry’s project, Go Make It, is working with Stage 6 Media to create the video, which will highlight modern manufacturing and the high-quality jobs available. The video will be used to inspire and inform young adults about the manufacturing industry and the opportunities available right here in the Hudson Valley.
The Council of Industry’s Apprentice Program currently offers six registered trades: Machinist (CNC), Electro-Mechanical Technician, Maintenance Mechanic, Quality Assurance Auditor, Toolmaker and Industrial Manufacturing Technician and typically takes two to four years to complete. The program requires apprentices to complete a combination of related instruction as well as on-the-job training hours. Forrest is completing his related instruction hours through Tooling-U, an online learning platform that is available to each registered apprentice. Outside of Tooling-U Forrest is also considering taking advantage of the SUNY Apprenticeship grant, which allows apprentices to take up to $5,000 worth of trade related courses for free at SUNY Ulster.
If you are a manufacturing employer or a potential apprentice click here for more information or contact Johnnieanne Hansen at (845) 565-1355 or firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss details, requirements and potential opportunities.