Less than one year ago, Moraine Park faculty, staff and local business partners started with an idea to create a state-of-the-art facility for students pursuing manufacturing training.
Thanks to the hard work of many, the facility became a reality as the college celebrated the official opening of its new Jackson Regional Center with a ribbon cutting ceremony and an open house on Sept. 24, 2013.
The decision for a new facility was in response to many requests from area employers for job training in welding, fabrication and other advanced manufacturing trade skills.
Moraine Park President Sheila Ruhland said the Jackson Regional Center provides an excellent resource for students while also strengthening Moraine Park’s ties with area businesses.
“This is an important milestone for Moraine Park and our surrounding communities,” Ruhland said, as she addressed the more than 150 business leaders, community members and staff who attended the open house. “We are proud to be able to continue to work with local businesses to continue Wisconsin’s strong manufacturing tradition and move Wisconsin forward.”
Wisconsin Technical College System President Morna Foy and Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development Deputy Secretary Jonathan Barry spoke at the event and noted the importance of facilities like the Jackson Regional Center and the technical college’s ability to readily respond to the needs of our workforce and, ultimately, create jobs.
The Jackson Regional Center is a 9,515 square foot facility located in the Jackson Business Park in Jackson. Moraine Park leases the facility allowing the college flexibility to adjust to market conditions and respond quickly to changing employment needs. The facility houses a welding lab with 18 welding booths, a fabrication center, a CNC lab, two classrooms, two offices and a conference room. A Metrology Lab serves as a home to two new CNC simulators and two new VRTEX 360 welding simulation stations, purchased from a $647,000 U. S. Department of Labor Grant. The welding simulators help students achieve baseline skills more efficiently and reduce waste of costly welding materials.