Skip to Main Content

Search NewsCenter

Top Stories

Focus on Workplace Training: Waupaca Foundry

Focus on Workplace Training: Waupaca Foundry

Spring 2013

Training Today’s Talent

The Waupaca Foundry relies on Fox Valley Technical College to help keep its workforce skilled and competitive.

When the Waupaca Foundry decided to upgrade its assembly line with robotic arm technology, it looked to Fox Valley Technical College.

As the largest producer of iron castings in the world, the Waupaca Foundry maintains its industry leadership by investing in the latest equipment and technology. To train employees on how to operate, program, maintain, and troubleshoot these high-tech tools, the company turns to FVTC's Business & Industry Services team. Recently, the Waupaca Foundry added robotic arms to its assembly lines in an effort to enhance productivity and reduce downtime.

“We met with Fox Valley Technical College and discussed what we needed at every level of this project,” states Gordy Barth, manager of employee development and training at the Waupaca Foundry. “Then, the college helped us acquire the robots and implement custom-designed programs for several of our employees.”

Barry Degler, electrical foreman at Waupaca Foundry, was one of the 16 employees who took the two-day troubleshooting program. “I appreciated how Fox Valley Tech combined academics with hands-on problem-solving,” he says. “We learned all the necessary steps and then got to work on our own robots.”

Degler had never dealt with this type of technology before, but in just two days, he received all the training he needed. “The instructors did an outstanding job of preparing us,” he states. “For example, they would intentionally mess up the robots to have us figure out how to fix them. They understood that the more hands-on work you do and the more problems you solve, the better you develop your skills.”

Degler is confident he can keep the robotic arms running smoothly. “The arm picks up the part, dips it into the wash, and then puts it on the conveyor. It does this about 400 times per hour—much faster than we could ever do by hand,” he says. “If the arm stops working, I make adjustments and reset it.”

Barth has once again been impressed with the effectiveness of FVTC’s approach to training. “The outcome has been fabulous,” he states. “Barry laughs about this, but I now call him the brains behind the robots.”

The new robotic arm technology combined with solid staff training has been very successful for the Waupaca Foundry. “It’s unbelievable how much it has helped us improve the entire manufacturing process without sacrificing any jobs,” says Barth. “Our employees are our number one asset; we will always invest in educating them. Working with Fox Valley Technical College is one more way that we can continue to produce best-in-class castings.”

State’s Manufacturers Need Technical Colleges

A 2012 survey asked Wisconsin manufacturers how they are addressing their industry’s skilled labor shortage. The second most frequently cited strategy on how to resolve this problem states, “Collaborative training programs with technical colleges.”

Survey conducted by Schenck, CPAs. Read the complete survey at www.schencksc.com

FVTC President's Blog


New This Week

Student & Alumni Spotlight

Alumni of the Year Named

Alumni of the Year Named

Apr 21, 2016

Fox Valley Technical College announced its 2016 Outstanding Alumni of the Year recipient during ...

Plumbing Apprentice Skills Go Global

Plumbing Apprentice Skills Go Global

Mar 16, 2016

Two plumbing apprentices change lives in India while serving as part of Team USA.

Accounting for a Better Life

Accounting for a Better Life

Mar 16, 2016

Alexis Hill came to FVTC to build a better life for herself and her family.

Featured Videos

Featured Photos

Spring 2016 Focus Magazine

Read the latest issue of Focus magazine, with features highlighting students and alumni in Engineering, Accounting, Banking & Finance and much more.

Upcoming Events

10 May 2016

On Campus: Herzing University

11 a.m. - 1 p.m. | Appleton Campus Commons

On Campus: Herzing University

Thinking of transferring to Herzing University?

11 May 2016

Design & Portfolio Show

Appleton Campus

Design & Portfolio Show

Wednesday, May 11 | Interior Design & Portfolio Show: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. | Artist Reception: 5:30-7 p.m.

11 May 2016

Explore the Fab Lab

4-5:30 p.m. | Bordini Center

Explore the Fab Lab

Wednesday, May 11, 4-5:30 p.m., FVTC Bordini Center | Come see what the FVTC Fab Lab has to offer.

Calendar

«May 2016»
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
2425262930
4/30/2016 8:00 AM - 12:00 PM
32912

Aviation Fly-In & Open House

Either fly in or drive in for breakfast and explore the aviation training hangar and labs, visit with faculty and try out our full-motion Redbird flight simulators. If you're considering a career in aviation, this event is for you!

Read more
12
5/2/2016
33864

Open Registration for Summer Term

Community registration for Summer 2016 classes starts Monday, May 2.

Read more
3
5/3/2016 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
49053

On Campus: Grand Canyon University

Thinking of transferring to Grand Canyon University?

Read more
4
5
5/5/2016 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
44854

On Campus: Lakeland College

Thinking of transferring to Lakeland College?
Read more
67
8910
5/10/2016 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
49055

On Campus: Herzing University

Thinking of transferring to Herzing University?

Read more
11
12
5/12/2016 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
14
5/14/2016 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
38026

Cooking Demo: Explore the Many Flavors of Chicken

Explore the Many Flavors of Chicken | Saturday, May 14, 10 a.m. - Noon

Read more
15
5/15/2016 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
29657

Spring Commencement Ceremony

Congratulations, Graduates!

Read more
16
5/16/2016 - 5/20/2016
17
5/16/2016 - 5/20/2016
1819
5/16/2016 - 5/20/2016
20
5/16/2016 - 5/20/2016
21
22232425262728
2930311234
6/4/2016 8:00 AM - 1:00 PM
48643

Bark in the Park at FVTC

Enjoy a stroll through FVTC's trails with your furry friend! 

Read more

Get Social

Connect With Us banner

FVTC eConnect Newsletter Sign-up








CAPTCHA image
Enter the code shown above: