Lottery grant awarded to Pioneer Technology Center

Team Radio Marketing Group - December 9, 2016 1:28 pm

Pioneer Technology Center is on a mission to empower students with valuable skills that will reach far beyond the classroom.  The tech center is working diligently to reduce or eliminate the skills gap in manufacturing in its district.

Thanks to a lottery grant awarded to Pioneer Technology Center again this year, up-to-date technology in the classroom better prepares students for the technological advancements experienced on the job.   New manufacturing employees trained at Pioneer Tech will not require as much initial on-the-job preparation.

The new additions of the Makerbot 3D Printer Starter Lab, a Doosan CNC Mill and the Amatrol Steam Systems 1 Learning System provide opportunities for program students to collaborate and are powerful implements in Pioneer Tech’s technology tool belt.

Utilizing instructional technology, such as the Makerbot 3D Printer Starter Lab, provides opportunities for Industrial Technology/Pre-Engineering (IT/PE) and Machine Tool Technology (MT) program students to work together and create a richer learning environment, affording an academy-style format with real-world application.

Students in the IT/PE program will design components and print prototypes, utilizing the Makerbot 3D printer lab.  The lab includes four Makerbot desktop 3D printers, one mini compact 3D printer and one Makerbot Replicator Z18 3D printer, allowing up to six students to complete projects simultaneously. In addition, using the design and geometry from the IT/PE students, the MT students will generate CNC G-code and run the component on a new Doosan CNC Mill located in the Machine Tool area at PTC.

In an effort to focus on additional training for local manufacturing, the Amatrol Steam Systems 1 Learning System has also been purchased and now introduced to students.  This curriculum is all about installation, maintenance and repair of steam systems and their application to industry such as mills, commercial and residential setting, power companies, and other manufacturing facilities.  It can be utilized with not only Customized Business and Industry training, but also with the IT students in the Instrumentation Career Major.

“The ability to 3D print objects and assemblies the Pre-Engineering students have designed in SolidWorks is truly exciting,” said Richard Reese, Industrial Technology instructor.  “Instead of a student only manipulating a three-dimensional object on the screen of a computer, the student can hold it in his hands and examine it.  It also brings about the next level of engineering thinking when the student says, ‘I could have designed this better’.”

Examples of industry in the district heavily utilizing these skills are Phillips 66 and Continental Carbon, petrochemical refining centers, key employers of students graduating from the PTC programs.  Additionally, this valuable training will be offered to other local industries, hospitals, schools and municipalities.

Currently, local manufactures are sending workforce out of state for similar training. With this new addition at Pioneer Tech, out-of-state training is no longer a burden.  Students will have the opportunity to complete control loop simulations/training as well as learning all aspects of safety related to high pressure steam systems, including Lock Out Tag Out (LOTO) of pressurized systems.

“We are always trying to stay on the cutting edge for our district business partners, knowing that our students’ knowledge and training can help them find a high wage and high demand career, right here in our district,” said Bruce DeMuth, Superintendent/CEO.

For more information about Pioneer Tech’s programs and services, visit or call (580) 762-8336.


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