Ashleigh Walters, President of Onex, Inc. and Vice-Chair of NWIRC’s Board, recently spoke at RB Wiley Charter School and Iroquois Elementary School for their Career Days. She taught the students the Improvement Kata four step scientific pattern of thinking and explained how problem solving is a critical skill to learn for the manufacturing industry. Onex has also used this simple Kata in the Classroom simulation as part of their team meetings to assist continuous improvement initiatives.

NWIRC has several free Improvement Kata Workshops scheduled in June throughout the region to teach this skill to others. The program involves a simulation exercise to learn a pattern of scientific thinking to help anyone (no matter the age) achieve difficult goals….from improving processes within manufacturing to teachers working on projects with their students. The programs are held from 8:30-10:30am, and here is the lineup: (See more details at


June 6: Warren
June 19- Bradford
June 19- Oil City
June 26- Erie
June 28- Clarion