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Trailblazing engineer teaches teenagers about manufacturing at summer camp

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Posted at 8:19 PM, Jul 08, 2024

INDIANAPOLIS — Lynn Sinnott spent more than two decades working in advanced manufacturing. She's now using her knowledge to inspire younger Hoosiers to go into the same career.

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Sinnott is leading the Conexus and TeenWorks Catapult summer camp, a six-week course at Ivy Tech for teenagers to learn about manufacturing.

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"It's teaching the students what it's like to be in that work environment," Sinott said. "Not only what it's like in an academic setting in the classroom but applying it in action."

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Students used a conveyor belt to assemble Lego cars with the same procedures Indiana's car plants use on the line.

Manufacturing is one of Indiana's largest industries. The National Association of Manufacturing reports more than 500,000 Hoosiers work in the industry with an average salary of $86,052 per year.

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Sinnott worked in manufacturing at General Electric and broke barriers along the way.

"When I first started in the '80s, it was very difficult," Sinnott said. "Being the only woman in that setting was definitely a barrier I had to overcome. I had to put that aside and stay focused on the goal."

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Five women are in Sinnott's class, including rising high school senior Ope Ogunrinde.

"I've learned about how [Sinnott] works in those areas and how being very detail-oriented has helped her, and I really want to take that from her," Ogunrinde said.

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Sinnott hopes young Hoosiers consider engineering as the world continues to evolve.

"I knew that with data, I could prove anything," Sinnott said.