Techniques Magazine Techniques February 2011 : Page 61

SCHOOL SPOTLIGHT HENNEpIN tECHNICAL COLLEGE (HtC) OFFERS MORE tHAN 40 pROGRAMS at its campuses in Brook -Hennepin Technical College lyn Park and Eden Prairie, and it has been ranked as one of the top 10 colleges in Minnesota. Among its offerings is the Manufacturing Engineering Technol -ogy Associate in Applied Science degree, which provides students with a multi-discipline skill base. The degree program is unique in that it allows students to receive a broad-based education in manu-facturing along with a specialization in one of the many areas of the field—such as automated machinery systems, elec -tronics, fluid power, machine technology, mechanical design, welding technology or plastics. The plastics manufacturing technol -ogy diploma requires 36 total credits, and the curriculum includes technical courses on quality control; the fundamentals of plastics/chemistry and ingredients; an introduction to the plastics molding processes; and the properties and tests of selected plastics. Students also select from 12 credits of injection molding or seven credits of extrusion molding. The general education courses required are Commu -nication in the Workplace and Computers in Manufacturing. A specialized lab and a plastics manufacturing technology intern -ship are also part of the associate degree program. Upon completion of the program, stu -dents are expected to be able to perform quality assurance and statistical process control procedures, operate various types of plastics molding processes, perform matching/finishing and fabrication practices and procedures, and interpret and communicate plastics/chemistry and ingredients information effectively. Other outcomes include the ability to demon -strate extrusion molding and injection PHOTOS COuRTESy OF HENNEPIN TECHNICAL COLLEGE In the Hennepin Technical College plastics manufacturing technology program, students learn to perform quality assurance and statistical process control procedures and operate various types of plastics molding processes. molding process practices and proce -dures, and the ability to demonstrate knowledge and methods of properties and tests of selected methods. For students seeking only an occu -pational certificate, the HTC program offers two more options. The extrusion molding certificate is an 18-credit option that includes coursework on the funda -mentals of plastics/chemistry and ingre -dients; the properties and tests of selected plastics; quality control; and extrusion molding processes I and II. The injection molding option replaces the two extru -sion molding processes courses with three in injection molding and is a 23-credit program. According to HTC, the Manufactur -ing Engineering Technology A.A.S. degree is also intended for those seeking career advancement, so like many of the school’s programs, this one provides a pathway for students who wish to continue their education. Those students may go on to Minnesota State University-Moorhead and pursue a bachelor’s degree in operations management, which will prepare them for supervisory and man -agement positions. Plastics are found in almost every part of our everyday lives, and as the Society of the Plastics Industry notes, it is an industry with a presence in every state in the country. But if we want to remain competitive globally, we must have the trained workforce to do so, and programs such as the one at HTC can help us in that endeavor. For more information about Hennepin Technical College and its plastics manufacturing technolog y program, visit . Februar y 2011 Techniques 61

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