Texas State Technical College in Waco has had a plastics program in place since 1990, but only recently has the industry joined forces with the school to help boost the program and get new equipment. The most recent addition is an HPM injection molding press with 150 tons of clamping force. Wally Salls of WOS & Associates in Rockwall, Texas, the area HPM representative, and HPM President Bill Flickinger helped the school obtain the machine.
Salls said that TSTC has become a large supplier of workers for the injection molding industry in the area.
``Custom and captive molders all use graduates of TSTC,'' Salls said. ``The school has had quite an impact on the industry in this part of the country.''
John Anselmi, owner of Sunbelt Plastics Inc. in Frisco, Texas, is upgrading his Mattec real-time monitoring system to the Millennium version, and plans to donate a Mattec Pro-Help 1000 system to the school.
Anselmi, whose son Mike graduated from TSTC, also serves on the school's plastics advisory committee. David Monroe, vice president of sales with Mattec, will help the school install the donated system on three of its six machines.
Hub Scott & Associates, a machinery manufacturers repre-sentative in Houston, helped the school get its first Van Dorn Demag machine three years ago. George Gray, TSTC department chair, said that machine was taken out just before Christmas, but they expect a replacement soon.
Gray said that Hub Scott has been a big part of what got the program going and keeps it going. The ``tremendous support from industry'' is what makes the plastics program at TSTC a success, said Gray, plus a ``strong, active'' advisory committee.
The advisory committee for the plastics program reads like a who's who in Texas plastics processors. Besides Anselmi of Sunbelt Plastics, advisers include Ben Doskocil of Doskocil Manufacturing Inc., a large manufacturer of pet supplies in Arlington; Jim Earsley of Industrial Molding Corp. in Lubbock; George Van Wert of Texas Instruments in Temple; Reginald Yannuzzi of Igloo in Houston; and Don Wiley of Mobil Chemical Co. in Temple.
Besides their advisory capacity, those on the committee provide internships for many TSTC students.
Each quarter, the Central Texas Chapter of the Society of Plastics Engineers provides a student scholarship. Gray said about 25 students will graduate this spring and summer with associate degrees in applied science, and student placement is 100 percent.
``They go [to fill positions] statewide and even into Mexico,'' said Gray. ``We have students from out of state and out of the country, including one or two students from Mexico as a result of last year's Plastics Fair Houston.
``We've got good student enrollment,'' said Gray, ``but it gets better as more and more people know we're here.''