Recent Press

Press Releases, News & Updates from Explore and all of our education efforts.

Happy New Year! - It’s finally 2021

It’s finally 2021.  Time for a fresh start, right?

Yet, we’re still dealing with a pandemic, inconsistencies, and few things work like they used to. A fundamental philosophy the Explore team has operated under during the last year is to be open and adaptable when hiccups occur and innovative in making the situation better.

This simple concept encourages creative energy and a proactive approach to getting the job done. We want to hear from our manufacturers and educators how they are rolling with the punches and helping employees and students through this challenging time.

Send us your stories by emailing us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Make sure to check out the new Director’s NotesWhen Alternatives Aren't Acceptable?

Explore the New Manufacturing Provides Virtual Programming for Middle Schools

3c86a09b a79d 4f53 b35f 8c68e82fa345Explore the New Manufacturing's Manufacturing Days Virtual Lab Series started off with a smash hit, thanks to Fiesta Tableware! This and other manufacturer-hosted virtual labs were developed for blended, distance, or remote learning formats.

Interested middle school educators can receive video content for each lab, plus the following:

  • Pre-lab Guess the Manufacturer Contest
  • Student lab worksheet
  • Student lab experiment (Fiesta Tableware lab focused on tensile strength)
  • Bonus learning contest, the WV Made Scavenger Hunt which features Made with West Virginia Pride videos.

The series builds career literacy and is designed to meet WV Department of Education STEM based curriculum standards.

Manufacturers & Educators Working Together: October Updates

We’re working together to help students explore the exciting careers available in West Virginia’s manufacturing industry.


The Explore team is extremely excited to introduce the Manufacturing Innovation Challenge to West Virginia.  Using problem-solving skills, high school teams work to solve a real-world challenge issued by a regional manufacturer. 

The challenge provides benefits for both manufacturers and students.

Today is National Manufacturing Day!

Celebrated annually on the first Friday in October, National Manufacturing Day shines a light on modern manufacturing careers by encouraging companies and educational institutions around the nation to open their doors to students, parents, teachers and community leaders.  Things may look different this year due to COVID-19 but that is even more reason to share the importance of manufacturing in today’s world.  

Annual Report 2019-2020

Announcing Explore’s New Virtual Platforms

mdvlBecause we don’t want to miss working with your students, the Explore Team is launching innovative programs this fall for middle and high school classrooms.

Manufacturing Day Virtual Labs 

This series is a condensed virtual version of our Explore Academics and Workshops for middle school classrooms and remote learning programs. We have packed the labs with a ton of fun to help engage students.

Explore the New Manufacturing Releases Year in Photos 2019-2020 Book

Charleston, WV. September 8, 2020 – Explore the New Manufacturing announced today the publication of its Year in Photos 2019-2020 Book.

"This past year, the Explore Team and its partners engaged more than 1,500 middle and high school students across West Virginia. Our efforts would not have been possible without the dedication and support of 52 manufacturers who worked with students and educators to increase the awareness of the industry's career options," Monica Cross, Program Director of the West Virginia Manufacturers Association Educational Fund (WVMAEF).

Explore the New Manufacturing, an outreach program of the West Virginia Manufacturers Educational Fund, provides hands-on, innovative learning labs and projects for West Virginia middle and high school students. The programis designed to supply foundational knowledge about local job opportunities inmanufacturing and create excitement about career pathways that align with student interests and skillsets.

The Year in Photos 2019-2020 Book will be available on the Explore website

Explore the New Manufacturing Announces 2020 Emerging Elite and Outstanding Industry Educator Awards

 Explore the New Manufacturing has announced the inaugural recipients of the Emerging Elite in Manufacturing and Outstanding Industry Educator Awards celebrating the skills and dedication of stu-dents and educators across West Virginia. "As the explore team has worked with students and educators to increase the understanding of manufacturing across the state, we have been amazed by student talent and poise. The educators involved in our programs are steadfast champ-ions for their students, tirelessly seeking means to help them succeed along their career pathways," says Program Director Monica Cross.

TCMS’s Dooley receives Outstanding Industry Educator Award

PRUNTYTOWN— The hard work, dedication and commitment of a local educator to his students was recently recognized by Explore the New Manufacturing.

Taylor County Middle School (TCMS) Counselor, Jerry Dooley, was taken by surprise when the non-profit organization made him a recipient of an Outstanding Educator Award.

North Middle's Lopez named Outstanding Industry Educator

MARTINSBURG — Always having a knack for computers and an interest in teaching, Amy Lopez made a career change that eventually landed her as the technology integration specialist at North Middle.

Her dreams of teaching — the career change is something she calls the best decision of her life — has led her through some interesting projects and connected her with students she’ll never forget. Recently, all her dedication to the field and students paid off when she was named Outstanding Industry Educator in the middle school category by the West Virginia Manufacturers Association, an honor that truly surprised Lopez.

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Stay informed on activities and programs that are helping to introduce West Virginia students to rewarding career opportunities.

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Upcoming Dates

27 Sep
WVMAEF Board Meeting
Date 09.27.2022 11:00 am - 12:00 pm

Updates from Explore

Contact us and get involved!

Interested in getting involved with the Explore the New Manufacturing Program?

We are looking for manufacturers, schools, teachers, and community members to
help us expand our efforts throughout West Virginia.

Help us by answering a few questions.