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Manufacturing in Spotlight as College Hosts ‘Make Cool Stuff Day’

Entrepreneur Nick Gilson, of Gilson Boards, talks with high school students about the importance of error in developing a quality product.
Entrepreneur Nick Gilson, of Gilson Boards, talks with high school students about the importance of error in developing a quality product.
Richard K. Hendricks, seated, instructor of machine tool technology/automated manufacturing, shows Loyalsock Township High School students the 3-D modeling that comes before parts are fabricated on the computer-numerical control machines in the Advanced Manufacturing lab.
Richard K. Hendricks, seated, instructor of machine tool technology/automated manufacturing, shows Loyalsock Township High School students the 3-D modeling that comes before parts are fabricated on the computer-numerical control machines in the Advanced Manufacturing lab.
Automated manufacturing technology student Bryce L. Kuszmaul (foreground, holding controller) demonstrates a robotic process.
Automated manufacturing technology student Bryce L. Kuszmaul (foreground, holding controller) demonstrates a robotic process.
John G. Upcraft, instructor of machine tool technology/automated manufacturing, shows an optical comparator in the college’s metrology lab …
John G. Upcraft, instructor of machine tool technology/automated manufacturing, shows an optical comparator in the college’s metrology lab …
… and a prototype that was 3-D printed in the college’s additive manufacturing lab before being fabricated and placed on the college’s award-winning, student-built Baja off-road vehicle.
… and a prototype that was 3-D printed in the college’s additive manufacturing lab before being fabricated and placed on the college’s award-winning, student-built Baja off-road vehicle.

Nearly 100 students from six area high schools visited Penn College on Friday as the campus served as a host site for National Manufacturing Day activities. Dubbed “Make Cool Stuff Day,” the high schoolers began their morning with a talk by Nick Gilson, the entrepreneur behind Gilson Boards, a growing manufacturer of innovative snowboards based in nearby Winfield. Gilson talked about the successes and failures in the company’s first prototypes and encouraged students to find their passion and make what interests them. The visitors then toured Penn College laboratories – where they learned about various manufacturing processes, from thermoforming to welding and machining to additive manufacturing – and the facilities of several local manufacturers.

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