Thanks to the hard work and dedication of Walker Career Center teacher, Terry Mitchell, the Precision Machining program is being resurrected. Not only is he breathing life back into the program, Mr. Mitchell has also secured grant money to help it grow. Through the generosity of the Gene Haas Foundation, WCC received a 2019 High School Grant Award worth $2,000 which will be used for credentialing and scholarships for students completing two years in the program. Additionally, Circle Machine Tools gifted $2,500 through Indiana Tooling and Machining Association that will be applied towards tools or materials necessary to help a student be successful.
Mr. Mitchell first joined the faculty at WCC in 2017 as an Engineering and Technology Education teacher. Through his enthusiasm in the Intro to Manufacturing course in his first year, Mr. Mitchell created the kind of excitement in the classroom that had students asking for more and that is how precision machining came back to life. There was enough demand for the course that it required two classes to accommodate all the students’ requests for 2018-2019. Through Mr. Mitchell’s continued enthusiasm, students are still clamoring for more. For the 2019-2020 school year, Precision Machining II will continue to prepare students with the knowledge and skills needed for entry-level machinists. Not only will students in the Precision Machining program earn their high school credits as they learn their skilled trade, they can also earn multiple dual credits from Ivy Tech or Vincennes University if they decide to pursue a post secondary degree.
Students who participate in the Precision Machines pathway for four semesters have the opportunity to earn industry credentials through National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS). Achieving a NIMS credential is a means through which machinists can prove their abilities to themselves, to their instructors or employers and to the customer. With Mr. Mitchell’s commitment and the support of our industry partners, Precision Machining students will also prove that Walker Career Center is a great place to get an education!
Steve Rogers, Director of Walker Career Center, said the following about Terry Mitchell:
"Mr. Terry Mitchell does such a great job with students. In 2 years he has taken a Precision Machining program that was closed and grown it into a full day program. He has the ability to connect with student both in class and after school. He started Warrior Cycles- which is an after school club in which he and students build a motorcycle from frame up. Last spring they showed their bike and won an award. If Mr. Mitchell were to win this award, he would use it to buy more materials for his students to complete projects in his machining classes."