July 30, 2018

Crest Foods, of Ashton, generously donated a Fanuc M-410iB/300 robot to Kishwaukee College Electronics (ELE) Department. After working with Crest foods, the ELE Department obtained permission to trade the donated robot for a Fanuc LRMate 200ID-30iB robot, which is small enough to be housed on campus. This donation is instrumental in developing Industrial Robotics courses and expanding the skills taught in the Career Technology Division at Kish.

Over the past four years, the ELE Department has been working on securing a robot for Industrial Automation courses, with great support from the ELE Advisory Board. The Fanuc robot will allow Kish to offer a series of classes ranging from Introduction to Industrial Robots to Advanced Industrial Robotics. These will integrate into Programmable Logic Controller I & II courses, as well as the other ELE courses.

“The enthusiasm behind the robot steams from the relentless push from the ELE advisory committee sounding off on the importance of an industrial robot and the skills that our students will gain from working around the robot,” said Charles Raimondi, Electronics Instructor at Kish.

Students taking the Industrial Automation courses will learn to integrate OSHA Robotics Safety requirements, program the robot to perform tasks, install various inputs and outputs to work in conjunction with the robot, among other relevant skills. Additionally, the robot will be integrated into other Career Technology courses. For example, Computer Aided Design students will design fixturing for the robot and the Automated Engineering Technology students will manufacture the fixtures.

“The opportunities are endless with the Fanuc Robot,” said Charles.

The ELE Department will showcase the robot during Homecoming at Kish on Saturday, September 15. High school students are welcome to make an appointment with the ELE Department to experience working with the robot; please contact Charles Raimondi at craimondi@kish.edu. For more information on the Electronics Department, visit www.kish.edu/electronics.

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June 20, 2016

Jaime Briner, DeKalb, can state without hesitation what the best part of her ELE 102 PC Maintenance and Repair class was. “I was able to gut a computer with no fear of the consequences. If the thing caught fire, it still would've been alright.”  Her statement is interesting especially in light of the fact that she began that semester a self-described novice: “I knew nothing of computers and that terrified me.”

On the other hand, Susanna Eschbach, Cortland, took ELE 102 because, unlike Jaime, she has always loved computers. “I was initially drawn to the class on how to fix computers. I then saw the fall syllabus for the computer technology major and the classes sounded interesting, so I signed up for the Fall semester of classes!”

Lucy Farley, DeKalb, has always been drawn to programs where she can use her hands as well as her mind. “I knew I was looking towards the Career Technologies division to call home during my two-year community college adventure,” she stated. “Once into my first Industrial Electricity and PLC courses things seemed to fall into place. With a vast and unique field such as Electronics, I have great optimism in finding a career path and position that seems as though it were tailored to fit me.”

Overseeing all this enthusiasm is Charles Raimondi, Electronics Technology instructor at Kishwaukee College. Charles is just completing his second year with Kish but is no stranger to the electronics classroom and lab – he came to the College with five years college teaching experience.

Electronics is a growing field and its complexity and intricacies are an attractive entryway into STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math) fields for women. According to the Women's Bureau of the Department of Labor, women now comprise nearly 50% of all employees in the electronics industry and the demand for women in the field is growing rapidly.

Susanna is in the Computer Technology Program at Kish. “The first time you walk into an ELE class, you'll feel so overwhelmed. I'm half way through my second semester and I still feel that way a lot of the time. But then, if you persevere, you'll look back and be amazed at the amount of stuff you'll have learned and can do.”  She also credits Charles with making learning a combination of lecture and practical application in the lab. She said, “The mix makes sure that we understand both the practical and theoretical side of electronics.”

Lucy plans to transfer to a university but in the meantime has submerged herself in a program with an instructor who gives her the freedom to pursue her dream with just the right amount of support. “I am extremely fortunate to be employed within the department under my FANTASTIC instructor, Charles Raimondi, and am looking forward to the upcoming semesters,” she said. “Charles is extremely passionate about his work. The classroom atmosphere is best described as student-oriented. And Charles makes it a point to integrate women into STEM fields, as it is in high demand.”

But for Jaime, electronics is not a career goal. She plans to be a Public Relations professional, but learning the ins and outs of computers just made sense to her.  “I wanted to learn about computers considering how vital they are and likely will be later in my career.”

Susanna loves the challenge. “The best part of classes is always learning new stuff. It really never gets boringAnd it doesn't hurt that since the electronics field is one of the fastest growing industries, you're almost guaranteed a decent job as soon as you graduate!”

Enjoying the field and good job prospects makes the circuit complete.