JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ) held a grand opening event for its new Instrumentation and Control Technology Center (ICTC), located inside the Advanced Technology Center at FSCJ’s Downtown Campus. The learning lab features state-of-the-art instrumentation and controls that are utilized in the leading manufacturing systems throughout the world.
This industry-driven laboratory was developed to enhance the education of students who choose to work toward the newly created instrumentation and controls concentration within FSCJ’s Engineering Technology (Advanced Manufacturing) Associate in Science degree program. Through the concentration, made possible by a $499,655 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF), participants will be able to earn five technical certificates in Advanced Manufacturing Automation, AutoCAD Foundations, Engineering Technology Support Specialist, Mechatronics and Pneumatics, and Hydraulics and Motors.
The event also highlighted the first-of-its-kind training partnership which brings together FSCJ, OnSyte Performance, Siemens, AWC, Inc., ITG Technologies, Sun Coast Hydraulic Electric Manufacturing, Inc. and Rayonier Advanced Materials. The partnership allowed FSCJ to acquire the industry-standard equipment on display in the lab, including various types of electrical controls, data acquisition systems, computer equipment and virtual instrumentation. Representatives from OnSyte Performance, Siemens, ITG Technologies and Rayonier attended the event to help open the space.
“One of the biggest challenges facing the water industry is filling the need for qualified instrumentation and control technicians as much of the existing workforce transitions into retirement,” said Jeff Littlejohn from OnSyte Performance. “We are thrilled to partner with FSCJ to put students on a path to a rewarding career in the increasingly high-tech water industry.”
Working alongside Jacksonville-based technology partners, Siemens, AWC, ITG, Sun Coast Hydraulic Electric Manufacturing and OnSyte Performance also donated and installed a state-of-the-art, miniature wastewater treatment system at the Advanced Technology Center that will be used for teaching, training and research.
“As students work through the program, they will receive the highest quality of instruction combined with unique, hands-on learning opportunities utilizing the same state-of-the-art equipment and instrumentation that is actually in use by today’s industry leaders,” said Interim College President Kevin Hyde. “By giving students the opportunity to advance their education and training in this specific segment of manufacturing and wastewater management, we are cultivating the global changemakers of tomorrow for the benefit of the generations that will follow.”