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11/16/07 New Lincoln Computerized Machining Program Gains Momentum

 

11/16/07 New Lincoln Computerized Machining Program Gains Momentum

   
Harris & Bruno donates equipment and joins industry experts to guide program

ROCKLIN, CA – With employers on board, computer room walls going up, equipment on order and students voting on the program name, the new Lincoln High School “iDesign – Make Almost Anything” Computer Numerical Controlled (CNC) machining program is preparing to launch in spring 2008. Community support combined with a Strengthening Career Technical Education grant secured by the Sierra College Center for Applied Competitive Technologies (CACT) (sierracollegetraining.com) are setting up this program for success.

Artists, product designers and manufacturing engineers design objects in 3D computer software which can direct the CNC machines to produce the items. CNC machines cut and drill metal, wood, plastic or industrial ceramic to make art, toys, tools, jewelry, industrial fixtures, home accessories such as candlestick holders or lamps, and auto components such as shafts, gears, flanges and valves. With CNC machining, operators program a computer to position the raw material and direct the cutting motions. Once programmed, the part can easily be replicated. Manufacturers of electronics, aerospace components, telecommunication equipment and medical devices use CNC machining so skilled engineers, designers and CNC operators are highly paid and in-demand.

Nick Bruno, president of Roseville-based Harris & Bruno International (harris-bruno.com) a global manufacturer of products that enhance the performance of printing presses, arranged to donate a manual milling machine to the Lincoln High School iDesign CNC machining program. Bruno’s company started an apprenticeship program because of its need for CNC operators. “We are contributing a mill to the Lincoln program because we found that employees who learned manual machining first were much faster when they transferred to CNC machining,” said Bruno. “There is a need for skilled CNC operators and engineers with practical experience. This program will attract young people to the field.”

Bruno joined industry experts, educators, City of Lincoln Economic Director and local employers -- Carpenter Advanced Ceramics, Parallax, Inc., Lincoln Products and Sierra Pine -- to advise Lincoln High School instructor Scott Seacrist on equipment, curriculum and marketing at an advisory board meeting in October. “As a result of input from Nick Bruno and other advisors, I’ve integrated more manual machining into the curriculum,” said Seacrist. Advisors from Sierra College and CSU Chico are also working with Seacrist so the high school courses prepare students for continuing their education in design, engineering and mechatronics.

Lincoln High School ROP construction students are helping out while gaining experience by building the walls for the new iDesign computer lab. Gore Home Exteriors of Roseville donated window and door trim, and B.T. Mancini, Inc. of Sacramento donated baseboard trim for the construction. The grant is supplying Lincoln High School with CNC machining equipment as well as the new computers. The high school is seeking donations of additional machining tools to augment the program.

Students at the high school have also helped name the new program according to Connie Raynor, grant project manager. “The most popular name was ‘iDesign,’” said Raynor. “The idea of using their creativity to design and make almost anything on a CNC machine seemed to especially appeal to the girls. Young women are encouraged to enroll in this program so they can take advantage of excellent career opportunities in this field.”

For more information, Connie Raynor at 916-789-2993.

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