The Metals HUB is a business line of the Southland Development Authority (SDA) that  focuses on improving the metals, machinery, and equipment industries in Southland Chicago. It plays a significant role in boosting local businesses and community growth.

This HUB helps local metals manufacturing companies grow by offering vital support and resources. It serves both small startups and larger established manufacturers, pushing them toward greater success. By doing this, the HUB not only helps individual manufacturing companies grow and prosper  but also strengthens the local economy.

Metals HUB members sign a MOU with SDA to ensure that goals are aligned.  The process includes  an interview, site evaluation, and a conversation about the business needs of the company.. Members benefit from Metals HUB  activities that enhance their business operations, like finding new business opportunities, networking, and the use of advanced technical resources.

One of the most pressing needs of metals manufacturing companies is finding skilled workers.  The Metals HUB is starting an internship program for high school students, called the Engineering Technology Internship/Mentoring Program. This program, beginning in the summer of 2024, connects students enrolled in AutoCAD or shop to work opportunities in metals manufacturing companies.  This gives the students on the job experience and helps prepare them for jobs after graduation.  The goal is to boost the number of young people trained to enter the metals manufacturing workforce.  In 2025, SDA is hoping to  expand its reach to include adult education.

The Metals HUB area encompasses seven high school districts with a total of 13 high schools and about 21,000 students. Through the new internship program , the Metals HUB will inspire the next generation of manufacturing leaders and provide valuable job opportunities for the youth in our underserved communities.

SDA’s Metals HUB is a new and exciting initiative that is designed to provide essential support for metals manufacturers so they can expand their business, retain and increase their job base and build the economic prosperity in the Southland.