Elkhorn Area High School Students and Precision Plus Visit Wisconsin’s SkillsUSA Competition at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wisconsin

Michael Reader

Students from Elkhorn Area High School, advisor Fred Ganter (pictured on the far right), and Barry Butters of Precision Plus visited the Wisconsin SkillsUSA competition, which was held at the Alliant Energy Center on April 30, 2014. Precision Plus sponsored the transportation of the group. This was an important event for the students, as they are looking into participating in the robotics competition next year.

Butters also had the opportunity to go to Madison Area Technical College where the SkillsUSA Machining Competition took place.

One June 23-27, 2014, the 50th Annual SkillsUSA National Leadership & Skills Championships will take place in Kansas City, Missouri.  Last year, the keynote speaker at the conference was Mike Rowe of Dirty Jobs.  Click here to watch the keynote address on YouTube.

The SkillsUSA promotional video below, summarizes the essence of the conference and the movement.

Waukesha’s Catholic Memorial High School PLTW Students Design a Steering Wheel that Prevent Texting and Driving, and a Summertime Sled

Michael Reader

On April 30, 2014, students from Catholic Memorial High School in Waukesha, Wisconsin showcased several engineering design and development projects which were completed as a result of their involvement with Project Lead The Way (PLTW) program.

Among the projects showcased, was a steering wheel that requires both hands to stay on at all times, so as to prevent texting while driving. Another project featured a sled that was adapted for summertime enjoyment. Barry Butters, Director of Education and Training at Precision Plus, had been invited to attend the exhibit by the Waukesha Business Alliance Education Committee, and he was thoroughly impressed with the design and products featured by the students.

In partnership with schools, Project Lead The Way promotes “pre-engineering courses for middle and high school students.” According to PLTW, there are currently 1.3 million engineering-related jobs that go unfulfilled due to the lack of qualified individuals. Courses from PLTW integrate STEM education—science, technology, education and math.

We congratulate the Catholic Memorial H.S. students whose ideas and designs are sure to rock several industries.

Autodesk’s 2014 $250 MM Software Donation Benefits Every Single Middle and High School in the U.S.

Michael Reader

In an effort to prepare American high school students for careers in science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics (STEAM), and in conjunction with federal, educational and manufacturing initiatives, Autodesk’s president and chief executive officer Carl Bass, announced the company’s commitment to make available $250 million in 3D design software to all middle schools and high schools throughout the United States.  According to a news release of February 4, 2014, Autodesk’s “Design the Future” program, not only makes the software available to the schools and students, but also empowers teachers with the instruction necessary to pass the knowledge on.

This combined effort  by federal, state, and local government, educators, manufacturers and suppliers to the industry is in response to the lack of qualified high-school and university graduates  available to fill essential positions in technology and art.

Precision Plus  is proud to partner up with Autodesk in this nationwide endeavor by participating in the education and training of future technology leaders.

About Autodesk

Autodesk helps people imagine, design and create a better world. Everyone—from design professionals, engineers and architects to digital artists, students and hobbyists—uses Autodesk software to unlock their creativity and solve important challenges. For more information visit

U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Visits Precision Plus On Thursday, April 24, 2014

Michael Reader

U.S. Senator (Wisconsin) Tammy Baldwin is scheduled to visit and take a plant tour of Precision Plus on Thursday, April 24, 2014 between 2:45 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.  The tour will include a first-hand look of the advanced and high-tech machinery in action, the company’s Quality Lab and a brand-new training facility dedicated to train local high school students in engineering and high-skilled manufacturing careers.

In 2013, Senator Baldwin joined the ‘Manufacturing Jobs for America’ initiative.  After the plant tour, Senator Baldwin plans to answer employee questions regarding the current state of affairs in Washington with regards to manufacturing.  Precision Plus welcomes Senator Baldwin.

Senator Tammy Baldwin Visits Precision Plus -PDF

UPDATE:  On April 24, 2014, Senator Tammy Baldwin visited Precision Plus Here is our own Steve Dues pointing out the features of one of our Tsugamis.

Precision Plus of Elkhorn, Wisconsin Receives Business Friends of Education Award from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction

Michael Reader

On April 11, 2014, Mike Reader of Precision Plus , Inc. along with Amy Robinson of Country View Veterinary Clinic in Oregon, Denny Horn and Lisa Thompson of Cummins Emissions Solutions in Mineral Point, Eric Isbister of GenMet in Mequon, Lakeshore Health Care Alliance in Sheboygan, Mark Kaiser of NEW Manufacturing Alliance in Green Bay, Dr. Eileen Ahearn, Mary Mussey, and Richard Murphy of Project SEARCH in Madison, and  Chuck Jerrick of WESTconsin Credit Union in Hudson, received the Business Friends of Education Award from Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.  This award recognizes the power of businesses that go beyond the call to help students graduate and be well prepared for future educational and career endeavors.

The awards were announced by Tony Evers, State Superintendent and were presented by Deputy State Superintendent Mike Thompson, during the annual Wisconsin Association for Career and Technical Education Professional Development Conference in Middleton.  Mike Reader and other award recipients also participated in a panel discussion following the celebratory breakfast.

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“The collaborative partnerships fostered between industry and education play a key role in preparing Wisconsin students for the future,” said Evers. “These supportive relationships make a difference in student’s lives and strengthen our communities for years to come.”

Precision Plus is humbled to have received such honorable award.


Click here for a PDF of the official news release.

Precision Plus In the News: Elkhorn’s Precision Plus Receives State Award

Michael Reader

Lake Geneva Regional News has published an article about Precision Plus which has been chosen by the State of Wisconsin’s Department of Public Instruction to receive the 2014 “Business Friends of Education Award.” The article features a recount of the strides made in the last year to help educators and students in training and providing apprenticeships for technology careers.

For more information any any of the educational and training initiatives by Precision Plus, please contact Barry Butters, Director of Education at 262-743-1700 or via email.

On March 26, 2014 PMPA Members Took On Capitol Hill

Michael Reader

On March 26, 2014, thirteen members of the PMPA’s  (Precision Machined Products Association) Government Affairs Committee flew into Washington D.C. to discuss several industry key issues with members of the U.S. Congress.

Photo Courtesy of PMPA

These issues included:

  • Tax reform
  • Skills gap
  • EPA and OSHA regulations and NLRB rulings

The group was also able to conduct a PMPA Government Affairs Committee meeting and briefing at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce headquarters, which is located across the street from the White House.

Mike Reader, President of Precision Plus was among the delegation.  In the image to the left, Mike and PMPA Executive Director Michael Kobylka stand before the Capitol.

On the image to the right, Mike Reader stands next  Paul Ryan, U.S. Congressman representing Wisconsin’s 1st District.

Read the original report, “PMPA VOICES HEARD ON CAPITOL HILL” here.


Precision Plus Actively Supports Local Schools’ Career & Technical Education (CTE) Committees

Michael Reader

Precision Plus is now serving on four local Wisconsin high schools ‘Career & Technical Education’ (CTE) committees: Delavan Memorial High School, Elkhorn Area High School, Whitewater High School, and Beloit Memorial High School.

We are also serving on the Project Lead The Way (PLTW) Advisory committees for Elkhorn and Whitewater. Both Mike Reader, President and Barry Butters, Director of Education and Training share these responsibilities. Mike and Barry also are serving on the Wisconsin State PLTW Leadership Committee.

Beloit Memorial High School’s CTE Committee met on April 2, 2014, to discuss goals and share real-life industry experience with educators and students. Pictured from left to right: Chris Klatt (BMHS), Brandon James (ScotForge,  James Ekman (ScotForge), Mike Reader (Precision Plus), Matt Baker (Versa Tool and Die), Jim Hoyt (North American Tool), Zach Ford (ScotForge), and Curt Clansbery (North American Tool).

Precision Plus Attends Small Business Listening Session with Congressman Paul Ryan on March 20, 2014

Michael Reader

Congressman Paul Ryan listened to residents and answered constituent questions during a listening session for small business owners at the Monte Carlo in Elkhorn, Wisconsin. Meetings like this help Paul stay in touch with those he represents in Washington while better understanding their needs and concerns as he drafts and votes on legislation in Congress. Barry Butters the Director of Education and Training attended the session.

Paul Ryan serves As the Congressman for Wisconsin’s 1st District.

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