IMTS' Miles For Manufacturing Raises Funds for STEM Students

IMTS is currently running a virtual iteration of its Miles for Manufacturing charity runs and walks that raise money for underserved STEM and robotics students.


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An image of Matsuura's 2020 M4M team

IMTS – The International Manufacturing Technology Show – launched a virtual Miles For Manufacturing (M4M) event in October that it will continue through March 2021. This event is designed to support underrepresented, underserved students who participate in STEM and robotics programs in schools.

The Miles for Manufacturing 5K run first took place during the 2014 IMTS in Chicago, and has since been held in Chicago and places where IMTS’ parent organization AMT – The Association For Manufacturing Technology – holds key events and conferences. To date, Miles For Manufacturing has raised more than $120,000. IMTS covers the costs of all the event activities and logistics so that 100% of the funds directly benefit students.

“In past years, we have donated cash where it’s needed, 3D printers produced by our partner MakerGear and Bionics4Education Robotics kits produced by our partner Festo,” says Greg Jones, vice president of Smartforce Development at AMT. “This year, we asked schools to apply for cash to fund specific needs, such as technology for their classrooms or to help with building their robots, ensuring students could compete. This year, more than ever, we wanted to ensure students could continue to explore their passions in STEM and robotics, especially as students were learning from home, making working together with their teams more challenging.”

So far, Miles For Manufacturing has provided funding to ProjectSYNCERE, an organization that encourages students in Chicago Public Schools to seek an education in and career pathway toward engineering; FIRST Robotics teams from four high schools; East Leyden High School’s Industrial Technology program; Hoffman Estates High School’s HAWKS Engineering Underwater ROV Team; Woodstock High School’s VEX Robotics Team; and SparkShop, a non-profit serving 4th- and 5th-grade STEM students in Chicago Public Schools.