YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Several manufacturing businesses were on hand Friday at Youngstown State University to get the word out about the industry.

An Ohio Manufacturing Day event took place at the university’s Excellence Training Center.

Several speakers were on hand to discuss modern manufacturing and share their experiences with businesses like NASA and the U.S. Navy.

The center’s director Jackie Ruller said the center wanted to take part in the event because of what services they provide.

“We wanted to have an event for Ohio Manufacturing Day at the Excellence Training Center because that’s what we do here. We do workforce training for advanced manufacturing. We do research in advanced manufacturing,” Ruller said.

Ruller said the focus of Friday’s event was to provide networking with smaller businesses and with several companies and speakers in a job-fair-type setting.

America Makes Institute and the Mahoning Valley Manufacturers Coalition held a special interactive event at the facility on West Boardman Street.

Over 40 eighth graders from Warren City Schools got to take part in various hands-on activities that helped them get acquainted with local businesses and pathways, ecosystems and resources to help with career opportunities.

Josh Cramer of America Makes said the goal was to show the students what manufacturing has brought us.

“Companies make things, but they make so many important things, and I always used to tell students years look around the room that you’re in. What has not been made by manufacturing? So, the important part of today is to dee themselves in that industry,” said Josh Cramer, director of education and workforce development for America Makes.

America Makes offers a “K through Grey” approach, which helps with education and training opportunities for those after high school and college, and also provides more skills for those already in the workforce.