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WMIA donates iPads to high school woodworking program

The Woodworking Machinery Industry Association donated six iPads to North Salem High School, the association's 2013 Educator of the Year. The tablets will be used in the school's cabinet manufacturing program to support some new initiatives within the school.

The school, located in Salem, Ore., is embarking on a collaborative effort, using a STEM and CTE model, between cabinet manufacturing, mathematics, engineering and the business community. Students are learning lean manufacturing, which prepares them to be qualified workers in manufacturing upon graduation. They are receiving nationally recognized industry certification. Industry and the business community have donated more than $650,000 to the program. Another business partner has extended an offer to hire every qualified senior from the cabinet manufacturing program at a living wage, according to the WMIA.

Math curriculum is being written to incorporate wood topics and woods machines to help capture the attention of students learning mathematics. In addition, students will be using cabinet modeling software and commercial-sized CNC machines to learn math and job skills that will make them career-ready right out of high school. Collaboration is also occurring with the engineering program to incorporate the use of the cabinet manufacturing CNC machines as part of its Project Lead the Way curriculum.

"One of WMIA's chief concerns is ensuring the future of the woodworking industry in the United States," WMIA president John Park said in a statement. "Under the guidance of Dean Mattson, the cabinet manufacturing program at North Salem High School is making great strides in that regard. When we saw the success they are having training young people for careers in woodworking, we wanted to go beyond simply recognizing them with an award and provide tools that will further this education. We're looking forward to seeing the results"

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