SWEET HOME, Ore. -- A Sweet Home High School teacher is reaching kids far beyond his classroom thanks to the internet and some help from the community.
In this week's Skilled to Work, KEZI is partnering with employers in our area to address the lack of workers for skilled jobs in the construction and manufacturing fields.
Blake Manley, a forestry and natural resources teacher at Sweet Home High School, has created a web series called Manley Jobs.
With the help of grant money, the former logger has helped produce nine episodes that show kids different skilled jobs from logging to machining to concrete mixing.
Manley says he started the series to expose kids to careers that they wouldn’t typically see in the classroom, and the response has been huge.
“There were 14 or 15 schools - in some capacity - using Manley Jobs as a way to engage kids,” Manley said. “I know we're approaching 500,000 views on YouTube, which is incredible.”
Manley said he never intended the series to go beyond his classroom, but said he’s happy the videos are reaching other schools and getting students interested in different career paths.
“There's hundreds of students in Sweet Home High School that won't go to college. So, showing them different careers that they can get into right out of college I think is huge,” Manley said.
Manley got the idea when kids were doing distance learning and unable to take field trips in-person. He says he knows at least five seniors in Sweet Home who are now looking at skilled career paths because of the Manley Jobs series.
The series is made possible through a partnership between the Oregon Logging Conference Foundation and others.
You can watch all the episodes on Manley’s YouTube channel.