WNC News and Notes: WNC introduces tech to Fallon high school students

Oasis Academy and Churchill County High School students are learning about automated manufacturing, robotics, machining, blueprint reading and manufacturing technology as part of WNC’s Automation and Industrial Technology program this spring. Students pictured are working in WNC’s Express Tech mobile lab.

Oasis Academy and Churchill County High School students are learning about automated manufacturing, robotics, machining, blueprint reading and manufacturing technology as part of WNC’s Automation and Industrial Technology program this spring. Students pictured are working in WNC’s Express Tech mobile lab.

High school students in Fallon are exploring future STEM career possibilities and discovering success through Western Nevada College’s Automation and Industrial Technology program this spring.
Thanks to the extended arm of the WNC’s Professional and Applied Technology program and the instruction of Emily Howarth, Western is uncovering the world of automated manufacturing, robotics, machining, blueprint reading and manufacturing technology to Oasis Academy and Churchill County High School students. These students will even have the opportunity to be among the first in Nevada to earn an Industry 4.0 Smart Automation Silver credential at the conclusion of their AIT 198 Special Topics: Applied Industrial Technology class.
“It's been wonderful to meet these young people in Fallon as they are starting to think about their future goals for school and work,” said Howarth, WNC’s Electronics and Industrial Technology professor. “We have assisted so many Nevada high school students to explore and find success through Automation and Industrial Technology classes and programs, especially in our rural communities such as Dayton, Silver Springs, Stagecoach, Fernley and Yerington, and it's terrific to bring this opportunity to Fallon.”
The 10 students taking the class learn online but meet each Friday through May 2 to receive hands-on instruction in the college’s new Tech Express Lab. They are enrolled in the custom class as participants in the Workforce Innovations for the New Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development Mobile Lab grant program as coordinated by the WNC Office of Institutional Development.
The grant-funded mobile lab is serving as a novel way for WNC to bring rural community outreach with the college’s high-tech and hands-on courses to #MakeItInNevada.
“Dr. Kyle Dalpe offered our students a unique opportunity to add yet another endorsement to their high school portfolio by participating in the course and earning an industry recognized certificate,” said Oasis Academy Chief Academic Officer Rochelle Tisdale. “The mobile lab enables our students to have access to technology that currently does not exist in this rural community. Not only are they doing the coursework, but they are going on field trips to see how the skills they are learning can be utilized in the workforce. We are most appreciative of our strong partnership with WNC. We are constantly looking for ways to enhance our students' educational experience.”
Most importantly, it’s increasing the students’ engagement in manufacturing, engineering and related fields, and revealing to them additional career possibilities that they might not have known.
“It is an online class for a new online certification, and I have also put together some hands-on activities to keep them interested and to get them into the lab to show them what the full AIT classes and programs offer,” Howarth said. “Several of the current students have expressed a desire to ‘work with their hands’ but to do it in a modern and forward-thinking way that includes both knowledge and skill for career-level positions instead of task-based jobs, and they are moving forward through their classwork with that purpose in mind.”
Additionally, they are learning about critical safety topics that complement introductions to the basic fundamentals of electrical and pneumatic systems, measurement tools and symbols.
Besides the five full-day Friday lab sessions that Howarth is hosting in Tech Express to help students complete their online materials and prepare for the online certification exam, she has added a Saturday session to give them added support.
“In addition to the in-person work sessions, I am spending time with each student to engage them in activities that I've curated for this group in the mobile lab,” Howarth said. “They are on a variety of topics that introduce industrial technology such as electrical circuit protection, simple hand tools and basic uses of a multimeter. These activities showcase what to look forward to in future AIT classes and programs.”
The AIT 198 course launched in Fallon on March 30, providing students a six-week window for the completion of online lessons and quizzes. Howarth said that there are 39 online lessons and associated quizzes to prepare for the online Certified Industry 4.0 Associate-Basic Operations exam, which is the entry point for Smart Automation credentials.
“I've created and provided a printed student manual of information and a lab exercises exploration workbook for each student in addition to the deployment of a Canvas web classroom where each student gains access to the online materials and assignments.”
Howarth said that the cohesiveness of the Fallon campus has made delivering the course to students rewarding and smooth.
“From security, to the library, to the main office, to the campus director, they have done a tremendous job supporting me and the students, really going all out to make sure that any concerns are addressed and that the students have everything they need to be successful,” Howarth said. “The campus is the perfect hub for our rural outreach and development, and they are very community focused and student centered.”
For information about WNC’s AIT program, email Emily.howarth@wnc.edu..

Courtesy WNC
WNC Professor Emily Howarth is helping high school students in a custom class prepare for the opportunity to be among the first in Nevada to earn an Industry 4.0 Smart Automation Silver credential at the conclusion of their AIT 198 Special Topics: Applied Industrial Technology course this spring.

Grads Making Final Preparations for Big Day; Reception with President on May 23
Yes, that long-awaited day for Western Nevada College graduates is less than a month away.
With the Parade of Graduates drive-through ceremony set for 9 a.m. on May 26 on the Fallon campus, graduates are busy planning who will be in their celebration vehicle and how they will decorate their graduation cap, gown and celebratory vehicle(s).
Graduates can order their caps and gowns online at wncbookstore.com, but students should be aware that it takes about a month for home deliveries. The cost for a cap, gown and tassel is $26; a cap is $9.95 and the tassel is $6. There also is a $15.95 shipping and handling fee for online orders.
Grads can purchase their commencement regalia in person on Tuesday, May 24 from 1 to 4 p.m. in the Grad Store in Virgil Getto Hall.
Drive-through ceremonies are scheduled May 23 and May 24 on the Carson City campus. The May 23 ceremony is for Liberal Arts grads: Associate of Arts and Associate of Science degrees. On May 24, Associate of Business, Applied Science, General Studies and; Bachelor of Applied Science degrees and; those earning Certificates of Achievement are among the honorees.
In addition, WNC Interim President Dr. J. Kyle Dalpe has scheduled a reception for graduates from 2 to 4 p.m. May 23 in Carson City. Graduates can bring up to two guests. Graduates have been notified that it’s essential to RSVP if they are attending the ceremony and/or reception.

Take the Class You Want by Registering for Summer, Fall Now 
It’s not too soon to prepare for your next semester or session at Western Nevada College.
To help plan your summer and fall schedules at WNC, refer to the online schedules at wnc.edu/class-schedule/. Students can register for these courses through their personal WNC accounts, and the sooner they do it, the better chance they have of getting the classes they want.
Individuals planning to attend WNC for the first time can apply for admission at wnc.edu/starthere/. For information about becoming a student at WNC, phone 775-445-3277.
Students can also receive guidance in planning their degree and certification pathways by contacting Counseling Services at 775-445-3267.
Summer session begins Monday, June 13 and ends Saturday, Aug. 6. Fall semester starts Monday, Aug. 29.

Student Government Group to Recognize Students, Faculty and Staff on April 28
The Associated Students of Western Nevada will recognize outstanding students, faculty and staff during its annual Awards and Appreciation Ceremony on April 28 in Carson Nugget Hall in the Aspen Building.
“Each year we take just a few hours to recognize outstanding students in academics, service and leadership,” said Heather Rikalo, Student Life coordinator and ASWN adviser. “We celebrate the best of WNC with family and friends and help close our year with real joy and celebration for these students.”
The 5:30 to 8 p.m. reception will enable the student government group the opportunity to present awards to students in a variety of academic areas, including Professional and Applied Technology, Jump Start, Liberal Arts and Nursing. Student of the Year and Outstanding Student Leadership awards will also be presented. Regents’ award winners Dr. Rebecca Bevans and Ki’Hana Garcia will be recognized.
For their contributions to students, Advisor of the Year, Academic Faculty of the Year and Adjunct Faculty of the Year awards will be announced. In addition, ASWN will present awards to the Club of the Year and for service to the college.

.Courtesy WNC
Willy celebrates with graduate Will Swisher at the 2021 Western Nevada College Commencement Ceremony on the Fallon campus.

Aspiring Nurse Lesly Sanchez Named Student Employee of the Year
Financial Assistance Office employees at Western Nevada College are unified in knowing that the loss of fabulous student worker Lesly Sanchez will become the nursing profession’s gain.
Sanchez has been a standout employee for the past three years and has been selected as the 2021-22 Western Nevada College Student Employee of the Year. Described by her co-workers as intelligent, reliable, patient, compassionate and dedicated, the FAO is torn that the first-year nursing student won’t be part of its team forever.
“Lesly is a great asset to the Financial Aid office, and when she leaves, she will be greatly missed,” said Kathleen McFarlin, who is an FAO employee. “She is going to make an incredible, attentive, compassionate nurse.”
It also marked the third straight year that Sanchez has been nominated for the award.
“This award means a lot to me,” said Sanchez, who has long wanted to become a nurse. “I want to help bring a positive change to the community and help people who are having a difficult time with their health get better. And after being in clinicals and getting experience taking care of patients, my desire for being a nurse and helping others has become stronger.”
The Student Employee of the Year is selected after college departments nominate outstanding student workers for a selection committee, which determines the award winner. Student employees play key roles on Western’s campuses, dedicating themselves to helping students and their parents, as well as visitors. They have contributed even more to the efficiency and success of the college in 2021-22 since there are fewer student workers overall.
Besides Sanchez, Angelica Ramirez and April “Elena” Reyes were nominated for the award. Ramirez is a very respected contributor in Disability Support Services and Reyes has made a significant impact in Latino Outreach.


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