Source: CNS | Release | June 22, 2021

Kristin Waldschlager (left), CNS educational outreach specialist, presents a check to Norwood Middle School for winning first place in Anderson County Chamber of Commerce’s annual Dream it. Do it. competition. Also in the photograph (from left) are Norwood Middle School teacher Robert Stephan, NMS Principal Shawna Woodruff, and Anderson County Chamber of Commerce President Rick Meredith.

CNS provides donations to winners for classroom resources

Anderson County Chamber’s 2020-2021 “Dream It. Do It.” competition exceeded expectations, said Chamber officials, as four Anderson County middle school teams, working with local businesses, created videos that received more than 14,000 online votes. Norwood Middle School secured the People’s Choice Award as the team receiving the most online votes (5,445).

Norwood Middle School was also the judges’ choice, earning first place and a $1,000 donation for classroom resources provided to teacher Robert Stephan by Consolidated Nuclear Security (CNS), the managing operator of the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and the Pantex Plant in Amarillo, Texas.  Norris Middle School took second place, and teacher Ben Weaver received a $750 donation for leading the eighth grade students. Clinton Middle School earned third place and teacher Candus Claiborne received $500.

In 2021, “Dream it. Do it.” students created brochures highlighting job opportunities in local manufacturing. The student teams were paired with local businesses. Norwood Middle partnered with Clayton Homes Appalachia Division. Aisin Automotive, Eagle Bend Manufacturing, Protomet, SL Tennessee, and Techmer PM partnered with Clinton, Lake City, and Norris Middle Schools.

“We are absolutely thrilled with the results of our program,” said Anderson County Chamber President, Rick Meredith.  “Our goal was to get kids excited about manufacturing and expose them to the idea that there are lots of job opportunities and even a career in manufacturing.”

The Chamber, Anderson County Schools, and CNS have sponsored “Dream it. Do it.” since it began in in 2016. Area industries quickly lined up to take part as well.

“For CNS, it’s about the enduring global security mission that dates back to the Manhattan Project,” said Kristin Waldschlager, CNS education outreach specialist and a member of the Anderson Chamber’s Workforce Development Committee. “We will continue to need highly skilled workers for our mission, and getting kids at the middle school age to begin thinking about those kinds of careers helps us all in the future.”