Machine Tool Technology
• CURRENT INDUSTRY equipment
• SPECIAL PROJECTS in an INTERDISCIPLINARY COURSE with Automated Systems, Computer-aided Drafting & Design, and Welding (Hutchinson campus)
• Industry exploration through periodic FIELD TRIPS
• Strong INDUSTRY PARTNERS who hire our graduates
Careers in manufacturing are in HIGH DEMAND! Ridgewater prepares students for careers in the modern manufacturing industry using state-of-the-art equipment found on today's shop floors.
Graduates are prepared to work in the precision machining industry in the following areas:
CNC Precision Manufacturing Technician
Computer Numerical Control students spend the first year in basic machine shop. Second-year students concentrate on manual programming, computer-assisted programming, setup, and operating computerized numerical control equipment. An emphasis is placed on Computer-Aided Manufacturing (CAM) and learning tooling and programming practices used in the industry.
Students gain fundamental skills in everything from basic shop skills to CNC programming and CAM. Numerical control machine operators run computer-controlled machines. These machines cut, shape, drill, or otherwise modify metal or plastic parts. The computer program tells the machine which tools to use and how to use them. Operators mainly set up, tend, and maintain the machines. Once the programs are entered, operators select, measure, install, and secure the tools and attachments the machines will use.
Operators read blueprints and use their knowledge of the job to select the proper tools. They use hand tools and precision instruments to attach the items. Finally, they attach the work pieces and start the machines.
Toolmakers craft precision tools that are used to cut, form, and shape metal and other materials. They produce jigs and fixtures, devices that hold metal while it is stamped or drilled. They also make gauges and other measuring devices.