MoldMaking Technology

OCT 2018

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Workforce Development 20 MoldMaking Technology —— OCTOBER 2018 Steven joined Wepco Plastics (Wepco) one year ago without injection molding experience but with a strong product design background, which enables Wepco to offer customers product development and design work. He currently designs 90 percent of the molds that come through the shop, designs all the electrodes for new molds and assembles the projects for the moldmakers. He essentially manages each mold project by tracking the time from design to completion. Since he has become a part of the team, Steven has worked very closely with the moldmakers and toolroom workers to understand the company's capabilities and goals better. Steven has quickly become an integral part of the team. In the future, he will be learning programing, machine setup, grinding and many other skills. He also serves as part of the communication chain as products move from a design to a tangible part. He provides a means for moldmakers and customers to interact and to understand each other's needs better, which strengthens customer relationships and improves the end product. Steven's can-do attitude and ability to learn and adapt quickly earns him a very bright future at Wepco. Mina is a problem solver who goes beyond the call of duty. He has demonstrated leadership and initiative in helping Omega Tool Corp. (Omega) reach its goals and has helped his co-workers to embrace change by understanding the pain points and finding simple, innovative solutions. Mina successfully learned the fundamentals of moldmaking and machining while applying his other industry knowledge. He has been instrumental in the design, development and implementation of a new management and production system. Mina's organizational and leadership skills helped him guide staff in defining new roles and duties while streamlining the use of resources. Also, he worked with the software developer to tailor a new management software to the company's needs and wants. Currently, Mina is working on automating the scheduling department with software and is spearheading a paperless initiative. Since Mina started working at Omega two years ago, he has made countless improve- ments to machine utilization and data track- ing. He also fully automated the metric reports for transparent, easy access. Mina has the right mindset to help Omega move forward. Steven Kronenberger (25) Associate Mold Designer Wepco Plastics (Middlefield, Connecticut) Mina Girges (27) Manager of Advanced Planning & Analytics Omega Tool Corp. (Tecumseh, Ontario, Canada) Cody Proctor (24) Journeyman Moldmaker, CS Tool Engineering (Cedar Springs, Michigan) Cody started working part-time at CS Tool Engineering during high school. Immediately upon graduation, he became a full-time employee and earned his journeyman's certificate. He is starting his fifth year as a moldmaker. Cody is a shining example of next-generation employees who are excited about working with their hands. They like taking raw blocks of steel and turning them into molds that produce products people see and use every day. Cody understands the meaning of a full day's work and eagerly listens to the more experienced moldmakers as they work. He is also always willing to participate and represent the company at its local Career Tech Center, help with student evaluations and man the booth during annual career fairs. If given the opportunity, Cody shares his knowledge with other young people about the possibilities in moldmaking. Jake Zielinski (23) Lead Moldmaker Extreme Tool and Engineering (Wakefield, Michigan) Jake is a selfless, caring, honest and responsible young man. He originally aspired to become an engineer but found the shop's hands-on work environment more interesting. After completing the moldmaker apprenticeship program, he decided to earn his bachelor's degree in business while working full-time. At work, Jake leads by example yet understands that lifelong learning is part of the process. Jake is committed to the local area and loves where he lives. He is an avid outdoorsman and finds pleasure in hunting and trapping and in fishing and boating. As a former multi-season athlete, Jake keeps himself busy and healthy. He is an active volunteer, supporting many local causes. He also coaches the local high-school football team and mentors young men to help them realize their potential, which is important as the company moves toward mentoring versus managing the next generation of talent. He is an active member of the Knights of Columbus and participates in and supports a local musical club called Marty's Goldenaires Drum and Bugle Corp. Jake is proud of his faith and not afraid to show it. He says he is grateful for all his God-given gifts and talents.

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