LEWISTON, Idaho – High school students in the Lewis-Clark State College’s Northwest Intermountain Metal Manufacturing (NIMM) Career Development Program will showcase what they have been working on July 24 at 6-6:30 p.m. in the college’s Mechanical Technical Building, located at 515 11th Ave. in Lewiston.
The showcase event will be held in the CNC machining lab, the electronics lab, and the hallway between the two labs.
The program is in its third year and prepares students for entry-level metal manufacturing jobs when they complete their high school degree. The two-year training program, which is free to the students, includes online learning, hands-on engineering technology activities, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM), and lifelong learning. The 30 participating students started the program as 10th graders and are currently between their junior and senior year from various high schools in north central Idaho and southeastern Washington.
These students started the program in spring 2018 with online classes from the Idaho Digital Learning Academy (IDLA). The students then came to LCSC during the 2018 summer for three weeks of hands-on classes. The students stay in the LCSC residence halls during the week and return home each weekend. They again took online classes from IDLA last fall, and then online classes from LCSC last spring. The students will take additional online classes this fall and will finish with a final class in the spring before they graduate. When the students complete the program, they are expected to have the skills required for employment.
With the current program, 21 students are spending three weeks on the LCSC campus through July 26 learning about electronics and machining, while nine are taking online classes and one is doing both online and at LCSC. All 30 have been invited to the event, which gives students the opportunity to show what they’ve been working on, including machining items and building robots.
The students at LCSC this summer have a regular schedule where they attend hands-on classes each weekday in the morning and early afternoon. After that, they engage in other activities, such as tours of manufacturing facilities, or take part in activities, like boating. The projects are part of their classroom time. The instructors for the classes and projects are Rob McDonald and Scott Brainard, professors in LCSC’s Technical & Industrial Division.
The NIMM project is a joint collaboration with LCSC, IDLA, the University of Idaho, Clearwater Economic Development Association, Idaho Department of Labor, various school districts, and the Northwest Intermountain Metal Manufacturers Association. The project also is supported by a National Science Foundation grant.