Robotics Center plans announced—April 11, 2012

Through an innovative collaboration between Tri-Rivers Career Center, Marion Technical College and The Ohio State University at Marion, north central Ohio has an opportunity to provide a continuum of robotics and engineering education and training.

Educational and industrial representatives spoke to a group of more than 100 during a luncheon, Monday, April 9 at the Career Center about the need for skills training and the robotics and advanced manufacturing center which will be located at Tri-Rivers.

The center, will train people to work as technicians and engineers familiar with the use of robotics and associated industrial automation. Tri-Rivers Superintendent Chuck Speelman said he hopes to break ground within six weeks and plans for construction to be completed by September.

“We are attempting to move at the speed of business,” Speelman said. “We were on the right track, but we were moving at a snail’s pace,” he said. “What we’re hoping to do now is to get out of the way to allow some of the work, some of the opportunities for our young people to go forward.”

Along with Superintendent Speelman, Dave Wagner, dean of engineering at Marion Technical College spoke about Mechatronics—engineering in order to manufacture useful products. Also addressing the group: Ritch Ramey, Tri-Rivers Engineering Technology Instructor for the satellite program located at Marion Tech; Paul Aiello of Fanuc Robotics; Greg Rose, Dean and Director for The  Ohio State University at Marion; David Tomasko, Associate Dean, College of Engineering, The Ohio State University; and Mark Schmid, Tech Training Administrator for Honda.

Photo Left: Mark Schmid, Tech Training Administrator for Honda speaks to the group of more than 100.

Potential industrial partners include RobotWorx, Honda, U.S. Yachiyo and Fanuc Robotics.  Area Industries have agreed to donate about $400,000 worth of equipment and supplies. Speelman said construction costs will be covered by more than $1 million worth of upcoming cuts that will be made as the school attempts to realign its programs to fit what’s needed by area employers.

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