EDITORIAL: ADF’s plans for steel plant great news for students

We at The Stampede love good news, and this is some of the best we’ve heard in quite some time.

Great Falls is about to receive an economic shot in the arm, and CMR is poised to take part in it.

The town hasn’t had any real variety of job growth since the Anaconda Smelter closed on Sept. 29, 1980. That might be about to change.

In October 2012, ADF Group Inc. announced plans to build a steel manufacturing facility in Great Falls. The company said that it will start with about 300 jobs with the opening of the factory. The factory will hopefully be successful in attracting more and varied jobs to Great Falls.

In October and November, the city of Great Falls sent a group of educators and city officials to Montreal, Canada, to discuss ADF’s plans for the factory in Great Falls.

Industrial Technology Department leader Mark Yaeger was a part of this delegation.

On Dec. 12, Yaeger and the GFHS Industrial Technology department leader Lyall Tesch traveled to Montana State University in Bozeman to visit the engineering school. ADF wants to establish a close partnership with the schools so in turn they have a very close source of well trained employees.

The news about ADF is good news when one considers how dependent on Malmstrom Air Force Base, and that if the base was to be closed it would be a crushing blow to Great Falls economically.

A large percentage the jobs in Great Falls either are in the Air Force or are tied to the Air Force in some way.

With the recent end of the war in Iraq the military has shifted away from a militant stance to a stand down and reconsolidating phase. Malmstrom Air Force Base is one of the bases that could possibly have its missile mission removed.

The factory attracting more jobs would steer the economy away from being military-oriented to being more business-oriented. When the factory expands it will help to attract more business to support the workers.

The steel facility will also provide a local employer for CMR students who are in the trade classes such as Metals Manufacturing and Welding.

The jobs that ADF is bringing are good paying jobs.

Our students will have a great new opportunity to get local jobs directly out of high school. ADF will also provide more training at the plant.

The company will eventually be pulling students from CMR, GFHS, and the MSU College of technology to have direct hands on training at the factory.

CMR needs to take advantage of this opportunity to form a strong relationship with a business outside of the school.

We would like to see more relationships like this established, so CMR students and others students in the community can gain work experience and important skills.

We believe that job experience provides more for teenagers than just money; it provides a learning environment that helps them understand how the world functions.

Therefore, we encourage Rustlers to get involved with this new company and see it as a great opportunity, because it’s not every day that a steel plant in built in this city.

We at the Stampede hope that it will pave the way for more businesses to open up in Great Falls and the town will experience some of the economic and population growth that some of the other cities in the state have been experiencing.