Senator Dick Durbin (IL) visits Harper College, meets with apprentices

Cassandra Taylor, 3rd from the right

Senior U.S. senator, Dick Durbin (Illinois), recently visited Harper College in Palatine, Illinois and met with Dr. Avis Proctor, Harper College president, to talk about subjects ranging from open educational resources and student services to partnerships with school districts and universities. Senator Durbin then participated in a discussion with Harper faculty, staff and a number of apprentices who are studying and working in health careers, supply chain management and CNC Precision Machining. Representing Crafts Technology was our own apprentice, Cassandra Taylor.  Cassandra has been in the Harper College advanced manufacturing “CNC Precision Machining” program for more than a year and she has already become a very important and valuable team player at Crafts Technology.   

Crafts Technology and Hyperion Materials & Technology support apprenticeship programs such as this by partnering with schools like Harper College to help replenish and transform the workforce. As technology continues to rapidly advance, industrial equipment is becoming more sophisticated to include advanced manufacturing practices, automation/robotics, information security and artificial intelligence.  With the emergence of Industry 4.0, one of our most important tasks at hand is to remain competitive not only regionally, but globally, and by regularly hiring and developing highly trained and qualified machinists, operators and technicians we retain one of the most highly skilled workforces in our industry.

Roundtable discussions with Senator Dublin

The apprentices made the most of the senior senator’s visit by sharing their experiences in the programs with Senator Durbin, praising the opportunity to learn new skills while maintaining a paycheck and benefits, as well as the ability to graduate debt-free.

Lastly and prior to the senator’s meeting with the apprentices, Besa Sadiku, Harper College’s Manager of Workforce Initiatives and Apprenticeship Programs, met with Crafts Technology plant manager, Pete Mayer, and apprentice Cassandra Taylor, at the Crafts Technology manufacturing plant.  Besa toured the state-of-the-art manufacturing operation and is pictured here in front of the employee training matrix, which is an integral part of the skills assessment and career development planning at Crafts Technology.

Reviewing the employee training matrix at Crafts Technology