Gateway Technical College Elkhorn Campus CNC Lab and Manufacturing Center Set to Open January 22, 2016

CNC Lab and Manufacturing Center AdditionWith just a bit over a month to welcome in students and instructors for the next semester, Gateway Technical College’s (GTC) new CNC Lab and Manufacturing Center in Elkhorn, Wisconsin is buzzing with energy and excitement. Construction is coming to an end, equipment continues to arrive, and instructors are reinforcing their own knowledge by familiarizing themselves with the new equipment and software.

Rich Shouse, CNC Technology Instructor, spent a week in October at a PartMaker Training Workshop focusing on programming Swiss CNC machines. Shouse explains, “Learning this computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) system was a very easy transition for me, considering what I have used in the past. I have already programmed, set-up and ran ten jobs through our shop using PartMaker. Personally, I feel it is the strongest CAM system that I have ever used.”

In November, Rich Shouse also spent a week training on a Tsugami S205 CNC Swiss machine with Mike Sigmon, Application Engineer at REM Sales. He is continuing his Tsugami training at Precision Plus, (PPI) where he is shadowing CNC Setup Technician Hank Gillman twice a week until classes begin on January 22, 2016. He has already set-up and run a few jobs through the machine at the school.

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Shouse, with the help of CNC Instructor Marshall Campbell, has also been very active in promoting GTC’s CNC Lab and Manufacturing Center expansion to high school students.  In addition, he is reaching out  to the community and the industry. He states, “Even though this is only our first semester here on the Elkhorn Campus, I have signed six new companies to be on our Advisory Committee.” Additionally, he has made arrangements with Mark Beilman, PPI’s Director of Education and Training, for CNC students to tour the Precision Plus facility every semester. “It really builds excitement for our program,” he adds. Plant tours will also be a part of a unique opportunity for potential students, who will tour the PPI facility after touring GTC’s Manufacturing Lab.

In the next few weeks, eight manual knee mills with 2-axis Acu-Rite CNC controls, a Lincoln Electric Robotic Welder, and Carl Zeiss DuraMax Coordinate Measuring Machine (CMM) will be arriving to GTC’s Manufacturing Center. The equipment already at the school will be moved to the new location sometime in December. It’s been quite a crowded fall semester for students and instructors alike who operated from a temporary space in the building.

Without a doubt, January 22, 2016 promises to be a great day for everyone.