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New MCC Program Prepares Students for High-Demand Careers in Fast-Growing Mechatronics Field

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Area employers and faculty members at five SUNY campuses developed curriculum.

BRIGHTON, N.Y. – July 3, 2017 – As advanced manufacturers increasingly rely on state-of-the-art equipment—and on technicians qualified to operate these complex and expensive machines—to compete in the global economy, these employers face a critical demand for workers skilled in ensuring the technologies function properly.

The field of mechatronics—a specialty within advanced manufacturing that incorporates engineering, mechanics, electronics and other technical work—is rapidly growing in the Finger Lakes region. Nearly 170 job openings are anticipated annually for mechatronics-related positions, according to MCC’s 2015 Measuring Middle-Skills Occupational Gaps within the Finger Lakes Regional Economy report.

In collaboration with four SUNY community colleges and industry partners throughout the state, Monroe Community College has developed a mechatronics certificate program to prepare more qualified candidates for regional employers.

The program prepares students for careers as technicians skilled in assembling, maintaining, troubleshooting, repairing and upgrading automated manufacturing production systems. The systems usually consist of hydraulic and pneumatic components, mechanical systems, electronic sensors and motors, and computers that monitor and control the production process. Such machines can be found in automotive, medical, defense, biotechnology and electronics manufacturing environments.

The curriculum covers the electrical operation of industrial production systems, pneumatics, hydraulics, automated systems maintenance, tools used to identify and repair malfunctions, and safe work practices. Students will learn the most current processes and techniques, work on high-tech industry standard equipment purchased through other resources and valued at nearly $500,000, and participate on team projects that simulate industry scenarios.

Graduates can immediately begin their careers as equipment maintenance technicians and industrial equipment maintenance technicians, electro-mechanical technicians and robotics technicians.

Program graduates can also build upon their certificate and apply their earned course credits toward an associate degree in applied integrated technology.

The certificate program was developed with input from area employers and faculty members at MCC and four other SUNY campuses: Fulton-Montgomery, Schenectady, Mohawk Valley and Hudson Valley community colleges. As a result of the multi-campus collaboration, students can pursue a mechatronics certificate at any of these schools. Each certificate is tailored to their region’s specific workforce needs.

The SUNY consortium’s efforts were supported by the U.S. Department of Labor’s $14.6 million Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) grant. The grant enabled the SUNY consortium to work with industry partners to design mechatronics programs and further the capacity of SUNY colleges to offer education and training in this field.

MCC’s mechatronics certificate program was recently approved by the New York State Department of Education and the State University of New York. Classes are being offered at MCC’s Brighton Campus and at Eastman Business Park. Deadline to register for fall 2017 is Aug. 30.

For more information about the program and enrollment, call (585) 292-2200.

Media Contact:
Hency Yuen-Eng
Marketing and Community Relations