PIQUA — Chancellor John Carey, of the Ohio Department of Higher Education, paid a visit to Edison State Community College for a roundtable discussion, which focused on funding made available through the Regionally Aligned Priorities In Delivering Skills (RAPIDS) grant.
The RAPIDS grant, which aims to align state investments with regionally verified workforce demand, has been awarded to regional businesses and colleges and universities in the region to support educational equipment investments and internship and co-op initiatives.
“As we work to provide students in the region the best opportunity possible, we want to make that connection between Ohio’s educational institutions and hiring employers,” said Carey. “Students are our number one priority, and that’s why we’ve had such a concentration on career services. We know that Edison State has an outstanding program.”
Carey’s visit comes following the announcement that Edison State will receive five 3D printers through the RAPIDS grant to support the college’s engineering technology programs. Other colleges in the region will also benefit from 3D printing technology backed by the state.
“We are so very grateful to Gov. (John) Kasich and Chancellor Carey for these funding opportunities that allow us to move forward in economic and business practices,” said Edison State President Dr. Doreen Larson.
3D printing, most recently referred to as additive manufacturing, is a process used by manufacturers to create complex objects through rapid prototyping. This process enables companies to quickly field new products that are necessary for growth.
“Industry is using the technology to innovate processes and design new products faster than ever before,” said Tom Looker, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering. “Students need to be immersed in learning how to create innovative products and processes so that they will be valuable employees in the workplace.”
Throughout the roundtable, representatives from Clark State Community College, the University of Dayton, Edison State Community College, Sinclair Community College, Wright State University and regional business leaders from the Design Knowledge Company, Edaptive Computing Inc., and KTH Parts Industries Inc. gave presentations about the type of work that’s being executed under the RAPIDS grant, which brings hands-on experience with technology into the classroom.