Bonding with Industry at White Bear Lake

When Delroy Nyren started a Manufacturing Career Pathway program at White Bear Lake High School two years ago, he found the tools on hand to do the job sorely lacking. He had one little CNC desktop router, a couple of 3D printers, and some manual equipment.

Nyren did not have anything that would help the students prepare for jobs in today’s advanced manufacturing environment, including a CAD/CAM lab. From previous experience at other schools, Nyren knew that with assistance from their local manufacturing community, he would be able to determine the curriculum that would benefit his students and the equipment features that would correspond to industry’s needs.

To get the ball rolling, he went out and started knocking on the doors of local manufacturing companies. That resulted in a series of classroom visits that had industry leaders telling his students about all the jobs available to them in advanced manufacturing and advising Nyren what curriculum and equipment requirements would help his students prepare for those careers.

Responding quickly to the suggestions made by his industry contacts regarding equipment, his classroom now has a CAD/CAM lab with 12 seats of Mastercam, while the shop area now includes a Haas CNC mill and a Haas CNC lathe, in addition to a CNC plasma cutter, and a virtual augmented welder from Miller Electric.

Nyren says that one of the neatest things for him is when their friends from the metalworking industry come into the school, they see the software and machine tools that they have recommended. They see that Nyren has listened to them and is preparing his students for both college entrance and for employment in their companies to meet a growing need in the White Bear Lake area for qualified programmers and CNC operators.

Please visit Manufacturing Engineering magazine to read the entire article.