Precision Machining

Available on the Vincennes campus

VU Precision Machining Team Excels in International Competition
Precision Machining is a highly skilled occupation in which raw material is machined and transformed into specialized industrial tooling.

Vincennes University offers the most comprehensive Precision Machining Technology program in Indiana, and is one of the few in the United States to offer specialized training in manual machining, CNC machining, metal stamping die, and plastic injection mold building.

With over 1,600 hours of hands on experience, students have the opportunity to develop a solid background in machine shop practices, as well as learn the set-up and operation for all basic types of manual and CNC machine tools. Classroom discussions focus on theory, terminology, and calculations.

The type and quality of equipment used in our labs include traditional machine tools as well as the latest in CNC equipment— identical to that found in industry. In addition, our faculty has an extensive background in education, teaching, and industry, to ensure that students receive instruction in both theory and practical applications.
 

Precision Machining Technology graduates have the option of applying for acceptance into our 14 week summer session, Advanced CNC Machining & Programming, providing them with an additional 560 hours of hands on CNC education, as well as a second Associates degree.

Starting salaries for VU’s Precision Machining graduates average in the $40,000 to $50,000 range with some far exceeding this. Job opportunities are excellent, with virtually 100 percent  placement.

For more information, contact Scott Wallace, Program Coordinator, at 812-888-5521 or swallace@vinu.edu.

Learn more about the courses required for this program.

Mission Statement and Program Outcomes

 

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VU Precision Machining Team excels in international competition

VINCENNES, Ind. - A nationally recognized Indiana Precision Machining program has now earned international acclaim.

PHOTO - Members of the award-winning Precision Machining Team from Vincennes University include, from left, Tim Bauer, Jeremy Snyder, Luke Karges, Jonathan Vennard, and Brandon Burnworth.  They were recognized by VU President Dick Helton and the VU Board of Trustees on Monday.  The team machined 12 parts for a skateboard truck and baseplate during a 7-hour international competition.

Competing with five teams from China and two from the U.S., Vincennes University’s College of Technology Precision Machining Team earned several awards:  Gold Metal in Education, Best Redesign Concept, and the Honorable Fair Play award.  VU was also selected the Favorite U.S. Team by the Chinese judges at the first International Machining Skills Exchange and Competition held in Bensalem, PA.

VU President Dick Helton and the VU Board of Trustees saluted the team’s international recognition Monday at VU’s Beckes Student Union.

VU fielded by far the youngest team in the competition, according to Tim Bauer, team manager and director of Manufacturing and Technology Partnerships for VU’s College of Technology.  Among the three students and three instructors on the team, ages ranged from 19 to 24.

“They selected a top program from education, from industry, and from machine tool builders.  These teams were made up of different types of industry and various segments of industry.  We were chosen as the top educational team to compete,” Bauer said.

VU’s team consisted of three instructors:  Bauer, 2012 VU graduate and first-year instructor Jonathan Vennard, and Jacob McElfresh, Elwood, a 2010 VU graduate now teaching for VU at Ben Davis Area 31 Career Center.  Student team members included Luke Karges, Princeton, a 2012 CNC graduate currently pursuing a Purdue baccalaureate program at VU; Jeremy Snyder, Sullivan, a Welding program graduate who is now a second-year Machining major; and Brandon Burnworth, Huntington, a second-year Machining major.

“I believe from the feedback I got from the sponsors that Vincennes University will be invited back to the next one.  This was the first - they are not sure if they are going to do it annually or do it every two years.  We were told that the next competition will be in China or India so that could be a real trip and a treat for some lucky students that could be involved in that.  I do feel very confident that Vincennes University will be invited in the future to participate,” Bauer said.

The Phillips Corporation, a global supplier of manufacturing technology products and services, hosted the event to enable economic and technology exchange between overseas and American companies, promote cooperation, and enhance levels of technology and management.

“I thought it was great.  It took me completely by surprise when they announced the results.  Evidently, they were impressed with what we could do.  Certainly for college students, I think we did very well,” Snyder said.

Building on the inaugural event held Sept. 15-19, plans are underway for future competition/technology exchanges that will take place in sites throughout the world such as Shanghai, Mumbai, Johannesburg, Brussels, London, and the U.S.

“When we first got back, I started talking to our first-year students and sharing our experiences and I’ve already had several of them that want to be involved if this happens again.  They want to be involved in all of the future competitions,” Vennard said.

According to the organizers, the goal of the competition is to learn and share with others around the world the best practices that come to the forefront as a result of the exchange, and to allow camaraderie and friendships to develop worldwide.

“Being the only school there, it was an honor to be among professionals that do this every day,” Burnworth said.

Each location will be dedicated to the exchange and competition but also to help a local manufacturer.  Phillips Corporation is working with other countries, starting with China, to develop this new approach for technology exchange and competition.

For this first event, the identity of a U.S. manufacturer was revealed to competitors only at the time of the competition.  The manufacturer was looking for an enhanced approach to produce two of its products.  Phillips Corporation gave each of the eight competing teams a design for each part.  Teams were judged on various areas such as safety, fixture design, tooling usage, teamwork, accuracy, and speed.

The purpose was to evaluate each competing team’s capability and skills in both precision manufacturing and team management.  When the inaugural competition was completed, the U.S. manufacturer became the owner of all processes and programs.

“One thing that we were really impressed by is that when we ran into a wall we were able to bounce back, get around it, and get going again in a lot less time than the other teams.  That stands out in my mind and speaks well for our department and the type of education students are getting here,” Vennard said.

Other manufacturers and technology companies supporting this inaugural competition included Haas Automation; CNC Software, Inc. (Mastercam); The Sandvik Group; Verisurf Software, Inc.; Mitee-Bite Products, LLC; Chick Workholding; Rey Trucks, Cimquest, Inc.; and Prism Engineering.  Coordination and sponsorship were provided by those companies and Cross Cultural Exchange.

“Our team was very comfortable and truly more prepared than we thought when we agreed to undertake this challenge - just 15 days before the competition.  The other teams had been preparing since May 1.  We had a well-prepared team and we were much more comfortable than any of the other teams that were in the shop with us,” Bauer said.

In addition to the competition, team members also participated in industry-sponsored seminars.  “Our students and faculty received a lot of new and exciting information that we are looking forward to working on.  We stayed following the presentations to learn more and discuss some programming with trainers.  This was a huge success for us in professional development and education,” Bauer said.

ABOUT THE PROGRAM

VU offers the most comprehensive Precision Machining Technology program in Indiana and is one of the few in the United States to offer specialized training in manual machining, CNC machining, metal stamping die and plastic injection mold building.

With over 1,600 hours of hands-on experience, students have the opportunity to develop a solid background in machine shop practices, as well as learn the set-up and operation for all basic types of manual and CNC machine tools.  Classroom discussions focus on theory, terminology, and calculations.

The type and quality of equipment used in VU labs include traditional machine tools as well as the latest in CNC equipment - identical to that found in industry.  In addition, the faculty has an extensive background in education, teaching, and industry, to ensure that students receive instruction in both theory and practical applications.

Precision Machining Technology graduates have the option of applying for acceptance in a 14-week summer session, Advanced CNC Machining and Programming, providing them with an additional 600 hours of hands-on CNC training, as well as a second associate degree.

Starting salaries for VU’s Precision Machining graduates average in the $40,000 to $50,000 range with some far exceeding this.  Job opportunities are excellent, with virtually 100 percent placement.