Centralia College’s Mechatronics program received a $40,000 grant from the Dart Foundation to purchase equipment for the Mechatronics Lab in the TransAlta Commons building on campus.
Kathy Warren from the Dart Foundation presented the check to Mechatronics program instructors David Peterson and Dan Whalen, Dean of Workforce Education Durelle Sullivan, and Vice President of Instruction John Martens on March 20.
“The money will go towards automation equipment to expand our courses that teach industrial control systems – classes that integrate conveyor belts, sensors, robots and the computer controls,” explained Peterson. “It also has money for our advanced manufacturing courses, CNC and 3D printing technologies.”
The Mechatronics program currently has 30 first-year students and 17 second-year students expected to graduate in June. Graduates go on to work in high-tech manufacturing, warehousing, and electronic industries using automation and robotics to make operations more reliable and efficient.
The Dart Foundation is a private family foundation committed to youth education, primarily in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Grants are made in the communities which serve as homes to Dart Container Corporation’s production facilities. In Washington, those facilities are in Tumwater and Tacoma.