November 03, 2011

Wentworth Opens New $3 Million Manufacturing Center

Addresses Professional Workforce Needs in Manufacturing Sector; Enhances Global Competitiveness

Boston, MA—November 3, 2011—Wentworth Institute of Technology celebrated today a ribbon-cutting ceremony for a new $3-million Manufacturing Center. The new facility will serve as an applications lab where students will gain hands-on experience working with the technology that is defining modern manufacturing. Students will be prepared to enter into rewarding careers that address the need for skilled engineers and engineering technologists in the manufacturing sector, which comprises approximately 12 percent of the U.S. economy.

Working on 20 pieces of equipment, more than 200 engineering and technology students per year will benefit from the latest technological advances in rapid prototyping, computer numerical control (CNC), and computer aided manufacturing (CAM). They will design and manufacture parts for industry, including mechanical components and devices for the biomedical, electronics, automotive, machine tool, and consumer products fields, which represent personal interests and future career pursuits. Students are now able to work on projects remotely and access the Manufacturing Center’s equipment to produce final designs and models on one of the Center’s rapid prototype printers.

Students are afforded the opportunity to be more nimble in their work as the increased functionality of the equipment enables real-time updates for improving the end-product being designed and created. The speed of the output that is generated from the printers also accounts for time, volume, and cost savings–important factors in the manufacturing process. In addition, the knowledge and expertise students gain from using this equipment will directly impact the shortage of manufacturing professionals in the U.S. and further advance the industry in the U.S.

“The Manufacturing Center is at the forefront of innovation – it rivals labs at leading companies,” said Fred Driscoll, dean of the College of Engineering and Technology. “The skills students will learn by using these machines is part of the undergraduate engineering and engineering technology experience, representing a shift in the workforce needs of the industry. They will become more marketable in their career pursuits and will represent the new wave of professionals entering into manufacturing, keeping the U.S. competitive in a global economy.”

The Manufacturing Center is partly funded by a $300,000 grant received from the Richard H. Lufkin Memorial Fund, Bank of America, N.A. Trustee to replace outdated manual equipment with modern computer operated machines, resulting in improved learning for Wentworth students.

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