Two collaborative MCC programs honored for innovation

Two exemplary MCC programs were honored last week in St. Louis at an awards ceremony that was part of the annual convention of the Missouri Community College Association.

MCC-Business & Technology’s partnership with P.E.T. International earned the Mel Aytes Faculty Innovation Award, which is presented annually to celebrate new approaches to teaching in the community college classroom.

PET International buildThrough the partnership with P.E.T. International, students in MCC-Business & Technology’s welding and fabrication program create and weld a component of the personal mobility devices P.E.T. distributes to people with limited mobility. Those devices are hand-powered because many of the recipients have lost the use of their legs. Business & Technology students weld together the part of the wheelchair frame that connects to the steering column. The components are shipped to P.E.T.’s headquarters in Columbia, Mo., assembled, and distributed throughout the world.

The coordinator of the Business & Technology welding department, Dr. Tim Gill, leads the project.


The MCC Kansas City Manufacturing Consortium earned the MoWINs Partnership Award, given in recognition of an outstanding partnership between a community college and employers working together in the MoHealthWINs or MoManufacturingWINs program.

Manufacturing Consortium MCCA 2013The Manufacturing Consortium was formed in 2012 with the goal of increasing the availability of qualified mill and lathe machinists in the Kansas City labor market.  In addition to Metropolitan Community College, 29 Kansas City-area manufacturers are part of the consortium. Consortium members have worked together to develop a Computer-Integrated Machining and Manufacturing (CIMM) program. The program is offered in an accelerated, 16-week format, with students attending classes eight hours a day, five days a week.  For the first 10 weeks, students learn and develop skills in the classroom and at the MCC Business & Technology machine tool lab.  For the final six weeks, students participate in a company-paid internship in the production facility of a consortium partner.

Student demand for seats in the 16-week cohort is high, due largely to the paid internships and the strong prospect of a job offer on completion.