NORFOLK, Neb. – For the fourth consecutive year, the Machining and Manufacturing Automation program at Northeast Community College has received a $10,000 grant from the Gene Haas Foundation. The funds will be used to provide financial assistance to students enrolled in the program.
Shanelle Grudzinski, dean of Applied Technology at Northeast, said the college is grateful to the Haas organization for the continuation of their generous gift to Northeast students.
“The Gene Haas Foundation scholarship grant is not just about donating; it’s about making a meaningful difference for students attending Northeast Community College’s Machining and Manufacturing Automation program by affording those students access to education and training,” Grudzinski said. “It’s about supporting the future of the manufacturing industry and economic development by providing access to a skilled labor force, all of which Northeast and its students are humbled to have received over the past four years.”
Grant applications are submitted by June of each year to the Gene Hass Foundation for grant funding to support students enrolling in manufacturing education at Northeast. Students are eligible for the financial support upon enrolling in the Machining & Manufacturing Automation program with no application and no restrictions in regard to grade point averages or income. Students must achieve at least a C average going into second semester at Northeast to continue to receive the funds.
The Haas funding has served 18 Northeast manufacturing students since 2018 and continues to make career technical education affordable and prepare them for a wide range of career opportunities in manufacturing.
Haas Automation, Inc., is the largest tool manufacturer in the United States. Founded by entrepreneur Gene Haas, the company designs and manufactures precision machine tools and specialized accessory tooling, mostly computer numerically controlled (CNC), such as vertical machining centers and horizontal machining centers, lathes/turning centers, and rotary tables and indexers. The Northeast Diversified Manufacturing Lab contains several Haas CNC machines.
The Gene Haas Foundation recognizes that the future of manufacturing in the United States – and around the world – depends directly upon the availability of skilled workers. Expanding the pool of skilled workers hinges on recruiting more young people to pursue careers in manufacturing as well as creating state-of-the-art advanced manufacturing training programs to ensure that graduating students have the skills necessary when they enter the workforce.
In 1999, Haas established the foundation that bears his name. Growing up with a strong social conscience instilled by his family, Haas initially formed the foundation to fund the needs of the local community. According to its website, Haas Automation is a now a billion-dollar company and its extraordinary growth has all come in an era when American’s were being told that the United States does not manufacture anything anymore.
Chuck Wiley and Tom Marick of Productivity, Inc., (fourth and fifth from left) present a $10,000 check on behalf of the Gene Haas Foundation to representatives of Northeast Community College and to students in the College’s Machining and Manufacturing Automation program. The funds will be used to provide scholarships to students enrolled in the program. Pictured are (left-right) Trenton Mathis, Creighton; Kolton Krick, Tilden; Mitch Roth, a Drafting student from Mission Hill, So. Dak.; Wiley; Marick; Shanelle Grudzinski, dean of Applied Technology at Northeast; Mitchell Leise, Wynot; Leon Fiency instructor, Machining and Manufacturing Automation; Jeremiah Lubben, Plattsmouth; Logan Stelling, Osmond; Jace Miller, Verdigre; and Braxton Bargmann, Lyons.