Kalamazoo, MI – Humphrey Products is committed to providing cutting-edge control products and services, including an innovative online experience.
We are pleased to announce the launch of our updated website, which features an improved layout and navigation to enhance the user experience. The content has also been reorganized to make it easier for users to find what they need.
Users may now quickly peruse the newest products by category and search for tried and true products with the touch of a button in our upgraded online catalog, which features downloadable CAD and two-dimensional drawings, as well as data sheets and line cards. The expanded literature library includes additional product information available for download.
Those needing assistance with valve selection or product customization can easily submit contact forms through the website, and clickable phone numbers allow for convenient calling from mobile devices.
In a pilot program, Humphrey Products recently partnered with the Kalamazoo (County) Regional Educational Services Agency (KRESA) to bring the attention of educators to the world of manufacturing in our home state of Michigan. On June 26th Humphrey hosted 20 teachers ranging from Kindergarten to High School Math and Science teachers, and from districts across the county, in an effort to help educate and inform them about the world of manufacturing. The program was facilitated by Kristen Garceau, Career Readiness Coordinator for KRESA, and David Maurer, Humphrey President and CFO. One of the goals of this partnership was to build a relationship with educators to help emphasize not only the importance of manufacturing but also the diverse workforce needed for success. As Dave Maurer put it, “As manufacturers, we have a strong need for a skilled workforce. However, we cannot expect the education sector to know what constitutes a “skilled work force” unless we’re prepared to show them what that is.” This pilot program is an effort to do just that.
When we think of manufacturing, we typically think of people fabricating parts from raw materials and assembling components into products for sale. While skilled labor is fundamental, educators often overlook many of the supporting functions in manufacturing. Functions such as: Engineering, Sales & Marketing, Human Resources, Purchasing, Production Planning, Facilities Management, Safety and Compliance and Accounting. All of these functions require special skills and many manufacturers work hard to promote from within to fill these roles. When educators can demonstrate the real world application of the concepts they are teaching, students will be better engaged in their learning and, hopefully, retain more of it as they continue to grow.
The reality today is that manufacturing companies need a diverse influx of workers to both support their business and to grow it. Teachers are on the front line in helping students find their way to their future career paths. Through programs like this, teachers have one more tool to help steer young people to a path that they may not have previously considered or even been aware of. Humphrey strongly believes this ultimately benefits both the student and employers. After the success of this pilot, KRESA hopes to duplicate this model at additional manufacturers, as well as in other sectors of the local economy.
KRESA & Humphrey Products partnering for a brighter tomorrow through manufacturing, education and understanding.
"...for many Southwest Michigan residents, a regular supply of fresh vegetables isn’t so easy to come by."
Brenda Kolkman and Linda Clarey, two of eight coordinators of the Giving Garden in Kalamazoo, see these needs as inspiration for the hard work they put in from March through October on property generously provided by Humphrey Products and Kendall Electric in Kalamazoo, located at the corner of East N Avenue and Sprinkle Road.
Tucked between these two companies and a set of railroad tracks, the Giving Garden reaches its 20th year serving our community this year. The garden was founded by Master Gardener Mike Blakely in 1997. The current coordinators, also certified as Master Gardeners, now excitedly carry on Blakely’s legacy. Clarey has been there since the beginning, noting substantial growth of the garden beyond that of its plants."
The future success of manufacturing depends on the recruitment of motivated students to choose this career path and also provide quality training to adequately prepare the students for a job in manufacturing, engineering or skilled trades fields. One of the biggest issues facing most manufacturers is the number of skilled applicants.
According to Kalamazoo Regional Education Service Agency, 500 students are now engaged in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education at Schoolcraft and Portage Central middle schools and Vicksburg High School. Economic growth in the 21st century will be driven by our nation's ability to both generate ideas and translate them into innovative products and services. Improving high school graduation rates and ensuring that all students are ready for college and the workforce is vital to states' ability to compete in the global economy. State leaders increasingly view science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) achievement as a critical component of success in college, career and life.
Humphrey, along with the other businesses in the Advanced Manufacturing Career Consortium, introduced Project Lead the Way to local Kalamazoo-area schools already using STEM. Project Lead the Way (PLTW), is a non-profit organization that partners with middle schools and high schools to provide relevant STEM curricular programs. PLTW improves problem-solving skills and encourages hands-on learning instead of all bookwork. For example, instead of just learning about wind turbines in the book, the students are encouraged to design and build air skimmers to learn how to integrate math with physics. This think-outside-of-the-box approach to learning is supported by the Advanced Manufacturing Career Consortium. With their generosity and support, a few of the middle schools and high schools in the Kalamazoo-area are able to participate to get the program running. The goal is to eventually have all of the area middle and high schools involved with PTLW.
“We’re hoping to reach most Kalamazoo middle schools and high schools by 2016,” said Jason Luke, who organizes PLTW locally through Kalamazoo KRESA’s Education for Employment. Dave Maurer, VP of operations at Humphrey is optimistic: "I feel very strongly that once the community is exposed to PLTW, the energy will build to make it a prominent part of filling the STEM learning gap. If we’re going to be successful as a community we need to identify STEM programs that can engage a much broader population of students, especially those who are likely to remain residents after their high school or college careers."
Recently, Humphrey, along with a few other local manufacturers was involved with PLTW as part of the Computerized Manufacturing Program at Vicksburg High School. Humphrey became involved through Vicksburg High School student Zack Glascock, who has a co-op position through the Education for Employment program with Humphrey. This co-op position, Computerized Machining was started through the Advanced Manufacturing Career Consortium to nurture career interest in the engineering and manufacturing fields. For Project Lead the Way, Zack and his student team had to develop a solution to problem local manufacturers were having on the production floor. The student team then had to present the solution to the team of manufacturers.
Humphrey hopes by Investing in these students the future will be bright with skilled employees with fresh ideas.
Humphrey is known for our innovation and commitment to the development of the most efficient products possible. However, we are also committed to the people who make our products as well as the newer generations of skilled workers who are seeking a job in the manufacturing industry. The manufacturing sector is continuously growing and we at Humphrey understand the importance of preparing people for this thriving industry.
We have been actively developing opportunities to prepare future employees with our involvement in the Advanced Manufacturing Career Consortium. Since 2011, more than 70 southwestern Michigan manufacturers and organizations meet to develop strategies to train and recruit good candidates for the manufacturing industry. The future success of manufacturing depends on the recruitment of motivated students to choose this career path and also provide quality training to adequately prepare the students for a job in manufacturing. The Michigan Manufacturing Association featured Humphrey and discussed how we are linking our past to the future with these endeavors.
One of the results of the Advanced Manufacturing Career Consortium initiatives was the creation of the Production Technician Academy. This is a segment of the Kalamazoo Valley Groves Center and is a hands-on program designed to teach new technicians on a variety of electrical and mechanical equipment. Another goal of the Production Technician Academy is to provide various types of certified safety training. At the end of the program technicians are expected to have the skills to maintain a safe work area, equipment, tools, and workstations. The technician will receive a Transcript of Competencies and a Certificate of Completion. The Certificate of Completion is from either Kalamazoo Valley Community College or Glen Oaks Community College. Students can use The Transcript of Competencies as a reference for their skills in future interviews.
Humphrey Products and Koganei Corp. commemorated their 50th anniversary of their partnership with a tree planting ceremony on Friday, June 8. The Japanese maple tree was planted in the Zen garden behind Humphrey Products.
50 years ago, an alliance was forged between North American pneumatics manufacturer — Humphrey Products — and the Japanese pneumatic manufacturer — Koganei Corp. This mutually beneficial partnership blossomed into one of the largest pneumatic offerings available globally.
Spanning five continents and backed by more than 100 years of knowledge, Humphrey Products and Koganei Corp. provide quality products for many markets, along with top-notch customer service.
The Japanese maple tree has been selected as the symbol of the 50th anniversary of the partnership. This tree is considered a sign of grace and is associated with peace and serenity of the world’s elements. It often represents balance and practicality and is called “kito” in Japanese, which means “calm,” “rest” or “peace.” The Japanese maple tree is being planted in the Zen garden as a tribute to the long-lasting relationship between the two companies.