By: Rhoda Miel
September 10, 2013
CHICAGO — GE Appliances has added new capabilities in thermoforming and injection molding along with metal shaping and assembly since it started to reinvest in U.S. manufacturing at its Appliance Park in Lousville, Ky.
Its $800 million investment in Kentucky has also produced new opportunities in product development because it allows industrial designers and lean manufacturing gurus to share one massive complex.
And it's on the lookout for students interested in learning some of the lessons available in Louisville.
GE is looking for seven students to serve one-year paid internships at Appliance Park. That is long enough for a student to work on a project that will go into production during his or her time there, said Lou Lenzi, general manager of design for GE Appliances.
Those students will work on some of the same design concepts as at independent facilities — such as researching how consumers will use products — but because the design office is co-located at a facility with production they can also see how their ideas affect day-to-day assembly and manufacturing, he said.
Chris Bissig of GE Appliances' design group discusses the program in a video interview from the Industrial Designers Society of America's annual conference in Chicago Aug. 22-24.