Calling All Educators

Teachers have the important challenge of guiding students to a path that fits their skills and unique personalities. We are here to help by providing teachers with industry-focused curriculum, STEM career resources, experiential learning opportunities, and virtual tools to offer in your classrooms.

Explore Lesson Plans

Lesson 4: What is an “Entrepreneurial Mindset”?

Lesson 4: What is an “Entrepreneurial Mindset”?

Lesson 3: What Are Soft Skills?

Lesson 3: What Are Soft Skills?

Lesson 2: Can I See Myself Working in Manufacturing?

Lesson 2: Can I See Myself Working in Manufacturing?

Lesson 1: What is “Entrepreneurship?”

Lesson 1: What is “Entrepreneurship?”

What’s So Cool About Manufacturing Video Contest

The What’s So Cool About Manufacturing Video Contest began in 2014 and has been growing immensely since then. There are now four regional contests in Southwestern Pennsylvania. The contest supports Catalyst Connection’s effort to build a strong pipeline of talent and give young people a new perspective on the exciting career opportunities that exist in manufacturing. To participate in the contest, students create a manufacturing video for their peers, parents, and teachers explaining what they think is so cool and rewarding about manufacturing! Videos from across the state including ours can be viewed on 

A series of lesson plans and virtual scavenger hunts have also been created to compliment this vast library of videos.

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MFG Innovation Challenge

The Manufacturing Innovation Challenge is Catalyst’s longest running STEM program. This program allows a group of students to go into a manufacturing company as “outside consultants” and tackle a real-world problem provided by the company. This gives students and teachers a great, project-based learning experience while providing relevant real-world experience.

Additional Resources

Pre-Apprenticeship Program

The Industrial Manufacturing Technician Pre-Apprenticeship program is a state-registered program that provides online learning and career connections to begin a career in manufacturing. The program provides national, industry-recognized credentials. Whether heading to college, trade school, or right into the workforce, this content can provide the credentials to lay a strong foundation for future manufacturing work. The program is grant-funded and can be integrated into existing classes, serve as an independent study, or function as a virtual option.

Virtual Tools

Whether you need to provide virtual content during the COVID-19 pandemic, offer students content beyond the classroom, or improve a cyber school curriculum, we’ve got you covered with a variety of tools and resources for virtual experiences. These resources include Youtube videos about careers in manufacturing, virtual career panels, virtual scavenger hunts, mobile video games, and virtual experiential learning opportunities.

Bots IQ

BotsIQ is a manufacturing workforce development program of the Pittsburgh Chapter National Tooling & Machining Foundation whose goal is to provide a pathway for middle and high school students to learn about rewarding career opportunities in manufacturing.

Identifying and developing a career plan is a challenge for most students.  BotsIQ holds a pivotal position as a workforce development program that attracts smart, capable students who love to build things and solve problems — exactly the type of people that will comprise the future manufacturing workforce.

Through BotsIQ,

  • Teams of students work together in a fascinating, real-world professional manufacturing model.
  • Students gain in-demand technical skills like mechanical engineering and design, electrical engineering, machining, 3D printing, and more.
  • Each participating school is paired with a local manufacturing company to serve as their industry mentor while they learn about options for a career in manufacturing.

Fluid Power Action Challenge

The Fluid Power Action Challenge was created by the National Fluid Power Association (NFPA) Education and Technology Foundation as a way to introduce fluid power engineering into high schools and middle schools. 

The Fluid Power Action Challenge will take place on April 3 at the CTC. The event is hosted by SMC Business Councils / Manufacturer & Business Association and Williams.

Titans of CNC

The Titans of CNC Academy is the world’s largest free CAD/CAM and CNC machining training online. The online platform provides hundreds of courses at all skill levels and at NO COST!  

WQED - Future Jobs

WQED wants to help students and job-seekers discover new, promising career options. Their goal is to  raise awareness about workforce development that is already underway and help the economy grow as workers find fulfilling careers and thrive in the Pittsburgh region.

Consortium for Public Education

The Consortium is a nonprofit organization working with schools across southwestern Pennsylvania on initiatives designed to strengthen and broaden school leadership, engage community, and empower students. Our  initiatives build cross-sector partnerships that bring resources, improvements and support to public schools. We relentlessly advocate for excellence and equity in public education for all students.

Remake Learning Network

Remake Learning is a network that ignites engaging, relevant, and equitable learning practices in support of young people navigating rapid social and technological change.

Our network, established in 2007, is an open group of interconnected, creative, and innovative people and organizations in the greater Pittsburgh region. Our purpose is to spark and share best practices and new ideas, make it easier for neighbors and colleagues to help each other, reduce duplicative efforts in the region, and leverage resources collectively for greater impact. No one organization alone can transform teaching and learning to better serve today’s young people, so Remake Learning helps bring them together.

Carnegie Science Center

Inside the Classroom and Out, We’re Here to Support Educators! 

Looking for a special science program brought straight to your school? We can do that. Want to take advantage of unique teacher professional development opportunities? We’ve got you covered. Looking for an exciting Pittsburgh field trip that aligns with your STEM curriculum? Carnegie Science Center is the place to be!

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