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Pacific Shipyard Intl. hosted the Project MFG Hawaii Maritime Welding Competition where local high schools were invited learn about careers in manufacturing.

HONOLULU, HI, USA, February 26, 2024 — Project MFG partnered with the Pacific Shipyard International, Department of Defense, and U.S. Navy, to host the Project MFG Hawaii Maritime Welding Competition and Career Discovery Day at the Pacific Shipyard International in Honolulu, Hawaii. On February 23, 2024, high schools from Oahu and surrounding islands were invited to compete in a Maritime Welding Competition and Career Discovery. This collaborative effort highlighted the many career options in maritime manufacturing such as welding, machining, and logistics, and show the career paths available within the local community. We were honored to have special guest Senator Henry Aquino attend our event.

During the competition an outreach event, Project MFG Career Discovery, was also held. Local industry partners were invited to come to the event to speak to high school students about careers in manufacturing. Project MFG was honored to have Airgas, Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard, Pacific Shipyard International, Samson Trucking, Hawaiian Cement, and The State of Hawaii as local industry experts. Students had the opportunity to see up-close what it is like to work at Pacific Shipyard International on their informative dock tours.

“Project MFG is more than a competition. We use the competition to showcase the skills needed in today’s workforce, but the competition & Project MFG Career Discovery events start larger conversations about local manufacturing needs with students, industry partners, colleges, and training programs.

“Project MFG Career Discovery shows students the many career paths available to them and how many rewarding manufacturing jobs are here locally available to them,” said Ray Dick, Project MFG Founder. “Connecting young students from local communities and showcasing the exciting opportunities available to them at home is an important part of our mission and one of the ways we promote the prestige of manufacturing.”

The Project MFG Hawaii Welding Competition featured three schools – Waipahu High School, Hilo High School, and Kapaa High School and consisted of 20 competitors. Students raced against the clock to finish a challenge that tested on skills required for shipbuilding while competing in a working shipyard. Once completed the projects were judged and the top three scores were announced.

The winners of Hawaii Maritime Welding Competition were:

First Place: Tripsen Tahele, Waipahu High School
Second Place: Sunila Sipinga, Hilo High School
Third Place: Logan Rabagu, Waipahu High School

Project MFG collaborates with local communities to find ways to elevate and help raise awareness of the need for highly skilled trade professionals in the area. The Hawaii Maritime Welding competition was a success made possible by our fantastic host site, Pacific Shipyards International and our gracious sponsors: Airgas, American Welding Society, Lincoln Electric, and Miller.

At the end of the competition, Lincoln Electric donated 9 welding machines to high schools in Hawaii to support Project MFG’s upskill training and project-based learning initiatives. The following schools received Power Mig 140 welders from Lincoln Electric: Hilo High School, Honokaa High School, Kapaa High School, Kauai High School, Keaau High School, Kealakehe High School, Kohala High School, Leileua High School, and Waipahu High School. We would like to thank Lincoln Electric for their part in supporting the trades.

The event was a great success, bringing together students, industry partners, government, and highlighting the importance of manufacturing. Pacific Shipyard International was a wonderful host and Project MFG is already looking forward to coming back next year for the competition!

To learn more about Project MFG and all our competitions visit our competition pages on our website and don’t forget to follow us on social media!