As part of his work experience Drew rotated through different departments.
As part of his work experience Drew rotated through different departments.

A glimpse into his future: Drew Milgate visits Dart Container Corporation

Drew Milgate, 2017 William A. Dart Memorial Dart Scholar, received a glimpse into what his future engineering career could be like when he visited the Dart Container Corporation manufacturing plant last year. Drew ventured to Mason, Michigan, to participate in the Dart College Co-op programme where he and other engineering students rotated through the company’s different operation groups and departments.

“Drew’s passion to learn outside of the classroom made him very successful throughout high school," said Dart Education Programmes Manager, Glenda McTaggart. "As he progresses through university, he will be able to recall this trip as his first true engineering class."

He spent three days exploring Dart Container Corporation, visiting five operational groups within the manufacturing plant — including Plastic, Foam Cup, Print and Product Handling, and was able to see first-hand the different areas of Dart’s operations.

Drew also visited bespoke departments where special engineering functions are executed, including

  • the Model Shop and Advanced Manufacturing department where raw materials are used to create parts which are later assembled for use in other areas of the plant,
  • the Holt Ink Plant which makes and houses all the ink used for Dart products, and
  • the Tooling Engineering department which designs tools that make and mold Dart products.

Throughout his trip, Drew met many Dart employees, all of whom provided a personalised perspective of their roles and experiences at Dart Container, including Dart Container President Jim Lammers. While learning about Dart Container’s processes, Drew also acquired a keen insight into the company’s culture. “I was surprised to learn that the engineers who design stay involved throughout the prototyping and manufacturing stages of product development. They are kept in communication with the groups responsible for following through with their work,” Drew said.

“I really enjoyed my time spent at Dart Container. The trip helped to develop and broaden my view of engineering; and while I previously had a general understanding of engineering as a subject, visiting Dart Container showed me how it is applied in a career setting," Drew said. "Overall, I have a better appreciation of the world of engineering since this trip and I believe I have been exposed to the field in a way I could not expect from traditional education.”