High-tech training at FVTC
June 12, 2012
From fox11online.com: “High-tech training at FVTC” — GRAND CHUTE – For seventeen years, Barry Degler has been an electrician at the ThyssenKrupp Waupaca Foundry. On this day, he is learning about robots.
“We’re installing new robots for the first time ever in our plant, so this will give me a basic idea of how to deal with them, and how to work with them,” said Degler.
This sixteen-hour course teaches the basics.
“We’re bringing them up-to-speed. They see that they need to have more of those people on the line aware of how the robots work, how it operates, and how to troubleshoot it,” said FVTC instructor Kurt Thern.
Instructors say these workers turned students are learning quickly.
“When I started this class the only thing I knew how to do was move a robot. Now, I can pretty much write a program, make modifications, adjustments to the robot,” said Dan Sauve, ThyssenKrupp electrician.
It costs $10,000 for the two-day course. A state grant picked up half the cost. The company paid for the rest. Leaders at ThyssenKrupp Waupaca say its money well spent.
“A lot of times we may call maintenance, to come up and help us fix a problem, and find out it’s something that maybe could have been taken care of by the operator themselves,” said Gordy Barth, ThyssenKrupp training manager. “Anytime we can keep things moving along, improve productivity, reduce the downtime is a huge benefit for the company and the employees as well.”
And the employees say they don’t mind spending a little time in the classroom.
“I’ll feel confident on making a robot adjustment definitely. After this class, good education,” said Sauve.
“I like learning. I am still young enough to learn,” said Degler.
Fox Valley Tech offers advanced classes in robotics as well. Students can take advantage of programs in the field of electrical and mechanical maintenance.