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Haimer USA Funds SME Scholarships to Help Next Generation of Manufacturers

Haimer USA — the Illinois-based U.S. subsidiary of a German company that develops, manufactures and distributes high-precision products for metal cutting — recently invested in the SME Education Foundation with a $25,000 donation to fund two renewing scholarships.

“We thought this would be a great opportunity for us to participate in something that really helps the next generation of people get into our industry,” says Brendt Holden, president, Haimer USA. “That’s the main reason we wanted to get involved.”

One of the Haimer USA scholarships — a renewing scholarship worth $20,000 — will provide one bachelor’s-degree candidate with $5,000 per year over four years. The second scholarship, totaling $5,000, will provide one associate-degree candidate with $2,500 per year over two years.

SouthtecHaimer USA decided to contribute to the SME scholarship initiative after learning more about how the SME Education Foundation is breaking down financial barriers for future skilled manufacturing talent at HOUSTEX, part of SME’s Manufacturing Technology Series (MTS), in February 2023.

“At Haimer, in general, we’re very much about education,” says Holden. “In our facility in Germany, we have a full, five-year apprenticeship program. We don’t have such a thing here in the U.S., but we know there are a lot of good schools out there related to engineering and/or machining, so we thought this would be a great opportunity for us here locally in the United States to participate in some sort of educational process.”

In addition to funding two SME scholarships, Haimer contributes its time at SME Bright Minds Student Summits, which take place at various SME manufacturing events throughout the year.

“We really like the Bright Minds program, because it helps guide students through the shows, so they’re not just running around from place to place; they have an agenda to go make sure they see everything,” says Holden. “In the first place, we’re a big believer in trade shows, but secondly, we appreciate the fact that students come over, because we know that whether they’re in high school, trade school or college, they’re probably going to be exposed to situations where our equipment can help them out.

“Many of them have no idea what they’re looking at at first, but we can see their excitement, and we take the time to educate them on the product.”

According to Holden, SME has been very easy to work with throughout the years, starting with the trade shows and Bright Minds Student Summits and continuing with the scholarship program.

“We feel comfortable and proud to work with SME,” he says. “We’re very happy to participate in the scholarship program, and we’re looking forward to seeing where it goes.”