Kellogg Community College recognized the DENSO North America Foundation (DNAF) during a ceremony last month on campus in Battle Creek, thanking the organization for a $100,000 grant supporting the creation of the College’s new Bruin Industrial Trades Mobile Trainer. DNAF is the philanthropic arm of leading mobility supplier DENSO, which has a 2,500-person thermal manufacturing facility and other locations in Battle Creek.
In 2020, DNAF awarded KCC with a grant to establish the trainer and increase community outreach by bringing skilled trades equipment to schools, organizations and community events. The equipment inside the trailer is easily accessible for presentations and hands-on activities.
During last month’s ceremony, held at the College’s Regional Manufacturing Technology Center at 405 Hill Brady Road in Battle Creek, Interim KCC President Dr. Paul R. Watson II presented a plaque to DENSO Operations Director Joel Markucki to recognize the company and the Foundation for their support of the project.
“The Bruin Industrial Trades Mobile Trainer is designed to bring KCC’s Industrial Trades programs to the members of our community, meeting them where they are,” Watson said. “We are grateful to DENSO for their support and partnership as we continue to encourage young prospective students to engage in the skilled trades and to see themselves joining this exciting and essential educational pathway.”
The mobile trainer provides flexibility for K-12 school tours at the RMTC by offering engaging and age-appropriate activities, and through more than 30 events to date with more than 3,700 students in attendance, many of them from groups traditionally underserved in higher education.
“In addition to supporting the communities where we live and work, one of DNAF’s primary goals is making good-paying, rewarding careers found in manufacturing and skilled trades more accessible to more people,” said Bob Townsend, vice president of Corporate Services at DENSO and vice president of DNAF. “KCC does so much to connect people in the Battle Creek area with opportunity, and we’re proud to help them continue that mission.”
When the unit is at the RMTC, the mobile trainer enhances instruction for current KCC Industrial Trades students who need extra time and support in developing the skills required in their programs.
The trailer has a certain towing capacity and all equipment inside the trailer can easily be rolled out for presentations and hands-on activities. Equipment in the trailer includes: A Skill Boss Manufacturing System, an AugmentedArc Augmented Reality Welding System, a desktop CNC router for machining, an HVACR Trainer and miscellaneous “tools of the trade” that allow students to handle and experiment with handheld tools and equipment used in fields such as HVACR, pipefitting and electricity/electronics.
Schools or organizations interested in scheduling the Bruin Industrial Trades Mobile Trainer can contact KCC CTE Career Coach Paula Lane at firstname.lastname@example.org or 269-565-2867.
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