MCC students’ winning efforts yields voucher for others

Thanks to the winning efforts by Meridian Community College’s Precision Machining Engineering Technology Program students in the Skills USA Computer Numeric Control (CNC) Championship, the National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS), and the Gene Haas Foundation (GHF), are awarding MCC a $1,500 voucher to support the earning of NIMS credentials by MCC faculty and students.

The funds can be used to pay for NIMS registration fees and test fees.

Brian Warren, Precision Machining Engineering Technology Program coordinator and instructor, said this is first year the college has been awarded this voucher. “We did really well at nationals this summer, placing fourth in the nation at CNC competition,” he said. MCC had three entrants in the category, Brandon Gray, Trey Hover and Clay Upchurch.

Gray and Hover are now employed as CNC machinists with Zavation, a medical device company from Flowood that designs, develops, manufactures and distributes medical device products. Upchurch is a sophomore in the machining program at MCC.

Specifically, the voucher is to help prepare more students for success in precision manufacturing careers.

“Both the National Institute of Metalworking Skills (NIMS) and the Gene Haas Foundation (GHF) recognize the importance of helping MCC students excel and advance in precision manufacturing,” said Dr. Richie McAlister, MCC associate vice president for workforce education.

“Furthermore, the scholarships speak to the quality of MCC graduates that NIMS and GHF are willing to invest,” McAlister added.

The National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS) was formed in 1995 by the metalworking trade associations to develop and maintain a globally competitive American workforce. NIMS sets skills standards for the industry, certifies individual skills against the standards, and accredits training programs that meet NIMS quality requirements.

In 1999 Gene Haas founded the Gene Haas Foundation.  Growing up with a strong social conscience instilled by his family, Haas initially formed the foundation to fund the needs of the local community. Haas is the owner of Haas Automation, Inc., America’s leading builder of CNC machine tools, which he started in 1983. Haas Automation is now a billion-dollar company.