Dozens of students from La Porte County were able to get a close-up look at some cutting-edge technology in manufacturing recently, thanks to a donation from the Economic Development Corporation of Michigan City (EDCMC).

Around 60 students from the La Porte County Career and Technical Education program attended the International Manufacturing Technology Show at McCormick Place in Chicago on Sept. 15. EDCMC sponsored the trip by contributing $1,500 toward the cost of a charter bus.

“The Economic Development Corporation of Michigan City is proud to partner with Michigan City Area Schools to provide students with an opportunity to gain real-world experiences and augment classroom instruction,” said Clarence Hulse, EDCMC Executive Director. “IMTS is the largest manufacturing trade show in the United States, so this field trip enables students to get a first-hand look at current practices and trends in advanced manufacturing. Many of these students will be part of our local workforce in a few years, and we want them to be excited about the field and their future.”

Students who attended came from La Porte County high schools and are enrolled in welding and machining programs at the A.K. Smith Career Center, or are part of the Compressed Air Academy at Michigan City High School.

“Every year we work diligently to expose our students to different opportunities within their chosen fields of study,” said Delincia Smith, Director of La Porte County Career and Technical Education. Last year, she added, students from these same programs attended FabTech, which was also supported by the EDCMC.

“Students genuinely enjoy these experiences, and we appreciate how events like the IMTS can inspire the next generation of manufacturers,” Smith said. “They come back to class and talk about the new equipment and technology that they experimented with and are extremely grateful for all the free items they receive at these conventions. Overall, the teachers and students truly get to understand that learning can occur in many different arenas.”

More information about La Porte County Career and Technical Education programs can be found at