Mastercam and camInstructor Partnership Proves Knowledge Is Power
When Duane Weidinger and Matthew Manton saw a need for better educational materials in the CAM programming industry, they set out to create a solution that would cover the entire market with one product line. This product line included traditional textbooks, videos, and online courses. With Weidinger’s background in teaching machine shop skills and Manton’s in teaching tool & die and Mastercam, the duo was a perfect fit to create camInstructor in 2007. Since then, the company, located in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada, has helped more than 50,000 people learn to use Mastercam.
Weidinger, president and founder of camInstructor, never wanted to limit the scope of their product to only schools. Thus, the creation of an entire line evolved, which could be used by both industry and education and included all the modules for Mastercam software. Knowing they had a great solution to a pressing educational problem, Weidinger approached CNC Software, Inc., the developer of Mastercam, to become a Third-Party Partner.
“They are a great company to work with, and we feel like we are part of their family,” Weidinger said. “The fact that we are on their website as a partner gives us credibility. Anyone can hang their shingle and say they teach Mastercam, but with CNC Software’s stamp of approval we get instant credibility. We also get their software ahead of time which allows us to start developing content for the next release as soon as it is available.”
camInstructor’s Mastercam books and courses are aligned with the Mastercam products that CNC Software develops, which include courses in Mastercam Mill 2D, 3D, Lathe, 4-axis, 5-axis, Wire, and Solids. “Our training products can be purchased as books with access to videos or as an online course complete with Tests, Student Monitoring and Certification.”
Since camInstructor’s goal is to offer Mastercam training to “anyone who wants to learn Mastercam,” they make every effort to reach customers in many different facets of learning. “This includes instructors that teach at colleges, universities, high schools, or vocational career centers,” explained Megan Dutra, head of Customer Service.
“We also serve many companies who want to train their employees and need online courses to cover all of Mastercam. Supervisors in these companies can use certain features in the courses that will allow them to monitor the progress of their employees thus giving them peace of mind that their money is well spent.”
The camInstructor offerings also provide solutions for individuals who are looking to increase their Mastercam knowledge for various reasons. “They may be working for a company who just purchased the software, and they want to change positions in their company,” Dutra explained. “We also have the individual who is at home and has taken a course in college and wants to do a little more to further their education.”
The comprehensive online courses have even prompted companies to seek them out in order to get a standardized method of education for all their employees. Recently Haas F1 Racing Team was one such company who needed 13 of their employees to receive training in a formal and similar manner and chose camInstructor. They felt that it was important for all of their employees to come away with the same training and know there was a standard for all of their employees. “We were able to provide a solution for them because we have a pathway that allows people with different learning styles to achieve success,” Weidinger said.
Weidinger is excited for the future of the company and partnership with Mastercam. They have recently launched a Certification program where people can get certified by camInstructor on using Mastercam. With all the training options they are able to provide, Weidinger believes customers will continue to have a more comfortable and productive learning experience.
Peter Mancini, Education Product Manager for Mastercam, and Weidinger hosted a workshop at the annual Haas Technical Education Conference when it was held at Flathead Valley Community College in Kalispell, Montana. More than 40 CNC instructors learned how to program a part using Mastercam to run on a Haas 5-axis CNC Machine. It is a perfect example of how the two companies partner to assist instructors who, in turn, will educate their students on how to use the latest technology available so they can go on to have successful careers in manufacturing. Ultimately, this is the goal—helping to make people’s lives better.