WAUSAU, WI (WSAU) - An area foundation has awarded two large grants to Northcentral Technical College. The B.A. and Esther Greenheck Foundation gave the campus $250,000 and the opportunity to get a matching grant of $300,000 additional dollars.
Darren Ackley is NTC’s Dean of Technical and Trades Programs. He says the money is being used to add some highly technical equipment to the campus. "We're going to use that money to outfit our new Advanced Center of Manufacturing and Engineering Center of Excellence, which is really our push for manufacturing. We're looking to enhance the image of manufacturing, as well as get some high tech training for some of our students to help fill the needs of local employers."
Ackley says much of the manufacturing equipment and training tools are already on the way to the Wausau campus. "We've already purchased a laser for our electro-mechanical program. It's kind of an etching laser. There are several things in shipment right now. We have a 3-D printer that will be coming in, hopefully in the next couple of weeks. We have a measurement arm that we just received a day or two ago. We also got a lot of mechanical systems trainers and some other CNC equipment that we're hoping to get in soon."
The 14,500 square foot Advanced Manufacturing & Engineering (AME) Center of Excellence opened in Fall 2012 and aims to enhance the image of manufacturing, allow additional opportunities for manufacturing programs to work together on projects and give a flexible space for both students and businesses to use.
Ackley says the Electro-Mechanical program will benefit most from the new equipment, as well as the Welding, Machine Tool, and Mechanical Design programs.
NTC is working on fundraising now for the matching grant opportunity.