WVC offers machinist training program

WVC offers new training program for machinists

Media Contacts: Mary Watson, dean of workforce education, 509.682.6614, or Libby Siebens, community relations executive director, 509.682.6436 (Mon. – Thurs.)

Zack Jacobson and WVC CNC machineBeginning fall quarter, Wenatchee Valley College will offer a new machining program on the Wenatchee campus to train those entering into or currently working in the machining industry. The program was made possible through a state instructional equipment grant, Alcoa Foundation grants, and assistance from the WVC Foundation.

Machinists are needed in areas such as aerospace, electronics, food processing, automotive repairs, public utility districts, Alcoa, county and city government transportation departments, specialty tool and equipment manufacturing, food packing plants and warehouses.

According to Washington Employment Security, computer numerical control (CNC) and machine operators are in demand statewide, including North Central Washington; Chelan, Douglas and Okanogan counties; and Eastern Washington.

The machining program will provide students with fundamental machining skills and experiences using current technologies and techniques. Instruction covers conventional turning, milling and grinding, as well as basic programming, set up and operation of CNC machine tools. Other subjects include shop safety, reading engineering drawings, shop mathematics, machine tool theory and lean manufacturing. Students will be required to complete a job shadowing experience and program culmination capstone project.

Students may choose from a non-transfer two-year associate of technical science degree or a one-year certificate of completion.

Curriculum for the program was developed by Zack Jacobson, WVC Industrial Technology program director, in coordination with the Center of Excellence for Aerospace and Manufacturing.

Jacobson and the late Kris Zehm, WVC Digital Design faculty, applied for and received a $90,000 state instructional equipment grant that was used to purchase a CNC machine. That machine, along with a robotic arm capable of operating machine tooling, will be used in the machining program. The robotic arm acquisition was made possible through an Air Washington grant.

The Alcoa Foundation also awarded the WVC Foundation $65,000 in grant funds for the purchase of equipment essential to the program, which includes quality lathes, mills and tooling. The WVC Foundation continues to seek in-kind contributions of equipment, tooling and supplies for the program, as well as scholarship funding for students in the program. For more information, contact WVC Foundation Executive Director Stacey Lockhart, 509.682.6415.

For more information about the machinist program, contact Mary Watson, WVC Dean of Workforce Education, at 509.682.6614, Zack Jacobson, WVC Industrial Technology program director, 509.682.6636, or visit www.wvc.edu/machining.

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Wenatchee Valley College enriches North Central Washington by serving educational and cultural needs of communities and residents throughout the service area. The college provides high-quality transfer, liberal arts, professional/technical, basic skills and continuing education for students of diverse ethnic and economic backgrounds. Visit our website at www.wvc.edu.