Tri-State Manufacturers' Association (TSMA) and Dream It. Do It. Minnesota are bringing back "What's So Cool About Manufacturing" Student Video Contest for a third year. The contest is open to high school students in the West Central region of Minnesota.

While manufacturing is the backbone of Minnesota's economy, contributing $43.7 billion to the state economy and paying an average salary of $59,000 (Source: Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development), many of the region's youth are unaware of the many rewarding career opportunities within the industry. In fact, only 4 percent of Minnesota high school students say they would choose a career in manufacturing (Source: Student Paths). Therefore, the contest provides an opportunity for high school students to explore manufacturing careers and learn about manufacturing companies in the region.

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2018 judging criteria place a greater emphasis on learning about manufacturing careers. Videos will be scored by the Dream It. Do It. Minnesota judging panel, using the following criteria and point system:

• How well the video answers the question "What's so cool about manufacturing?" (30 points)

• Ability to inspire someone to pursue a manufacturing career (30 possible points)

• Educational value (20 possible points)

• Creativity (20 possible points)

Judges will select three winning videos. Winning student teams receive cash for their school as well as cash for each team member. Teams also have a chance to win the "Viewer's Choice Award," if their video receives the most online votes from the public.

The three highest scoring teams will win cash for their school and for each team member:

First place will receive $100 for each student on the team and $1,500 for the school's manufacturing department. Second place will receive $75 for each student on the team and $1,000 for the school's manufacturing department. And third place will receive $50 for each student on the team and $500 for the school's manufacturing department.

The contest will also award a Viewer's Choice Award to the team that receives the most votes online. Each student within the winning team for the Viewers' Choice Award will receive $50 and the school will be rewarded $750.

Registration is open and schools throughout the region are encouraged to get their registrations in early, so they can begin working on their videos, giving themselves more time to submit a competitive video. There is no cost to participate. To enter, simply fill out the registration form found at dreamitdoitmn.com/videocontest.

Manufacturers who are interested in being featured in a video are encouraged to contact West Central region Dream It. Do It. Minnesota project coordinator, Michelle Landsverk, by emailing mlandsverk@icloud.com or by calling 218-280-1755.

For more on the video contest, a copy of the guidelines, or to enter, go to dreamitdoitmn.com/videocontest.