College partnering with BTD Manufacturing
Dakota County Technical College received a $300,000 grant from the Minnesota Job Skills Partnership (MJSP) to fund training, including robotic welding and fabrication, for 290 BTD Manufacturing employees.
Pat McQuillan, director of the Continuing Education and Customized Training division at Dakota County Technical College, and the Center for Professional and Workforce Development at Inver Hills Community College, reported that MJSP awarded the grant March 3, 2014.
“DCTC and BTD Manufacturing are excited by this training partnership made possible by the MJSP grant,” McQuillan said. “The training will be delivered to BTD employees at the company’s facilities in Detroit Lakes and Lakeville. Congratulations to Larry Lewis, the manufacturing and technology coordinator at DCTC, for his great work on this project.”
From the MJSP Funded Projects and Grant Management Web page:
Since its establishment in 1979, BTD Manufacturing has expanded operations and acquired several additional companies which provide a wide range of contract and custom metal works manufacturing for customers that include 3M, Freightliner, Arctic Cat and Cummins. BTD currently operates six facilities, with five in Minnesota (Detroit Lakes, Otsego, and three in Lakeville) and one in Illinois. Its Minnesota operations account for 717 of the 934 current employees. The addition of the third facility in Lakeville and the investment of robotics welding equipment have resulted in an immediate and significant need for training in robotics welding techniques. While formal welding training is available in Minnesota, there is little to no advanced training, i.e. robotics.
MJSP funding will support a partnership with BTD and Dakota County Technical (DCTC) to meet the training needs of 290 employees (267 current; 23 new) working at the Lakeville and Detroit Lakes plants. Training modules include: Robotic Welding; Fabrication; Tool Making; Mechanical, Electrical and Hydraulic Systems; Computer, Safety (OSHA), Management & Leadership and Continuous Improvement. DCTC will deliver training in Lakeville and Detroit Lakes with MN State Technical & Community College assisting with training in Detroit Lakes. The purchase of mobile robotic welding training equipment (Robotic Education Cell 2.0) will provide hands-on skills development for employees at their work sites.
One DCTC instructor will attend the FANUC Certified Education Robot Training and be certified to offer the training. Training will result in durable skills and a prepared workforce needed to successfully expand BTD’s operations and grow as a Minnesota employer. DCTC will enhance its capacity with the addition of robotic welding training that will provide DCTC students and other Minnesota employers increased resources to develop their skills in this area.
For more information about Continuing Education and Customized Training at Dakota County Technical College, contact:
- Larry Lewis
Manufacturing & Technology Coordinator