PIQUA — Chancellor John Carey of the Ohio Department of Higher Education paid a visit to Edison State Community College for a roundtable discussion focusing on the funding made available through the Regionally Aligned Priorities In Delivering Skills (RAPIDS) grant.
The RAPIDS grant, which aims to align state investments with regionally verified workforce demand, has been awarded to regional businesses and colleges and universities in the region to support educational equipment investments and internship and co-op initiatives.
“As we work to provide students in the region the best opportunity possible, we want to make that connection between Ohio’s educational institutions and hiring employers,” said Carey, a former congressional aide and state legislator.
“Students are our number one priority, and that’s why we’ve had such a concentration on career services. We know that Edison State has an outstanding program.”
Carey oversees the state’s public two-year and four-year institutions and Ohio Technical Centers, and with the nine-member Board of Regents, provides policy guidance to the governor and the Ohio General Assembly, and carries out state higher education policy. He is one of the few legislators in history to serve as chairman of both the House Finance and Appropriations Committee and the Senate Finance and Financial Institutions Committee.
Carey’s visit comes on the heels of the announcement that Edison State will be receiving five 3-D printers through the RAPIDS grant to support the college’s engineering technology programs.
“We are so very grateful to Gov. Kasich and Chancellor Carey for these funding opportunities that allow us to move forward in economic and business practices,” said Edison State President Dr. Doreen Larson.
Three-dimensional printing — most recently referred to as additive manufacturing — is a process used by manufacturers to create complex objects through rapid prototyping. It enables companies to quickly field new products that are necessary for growth.
“Industry is using the technology to innovate processes and design new products faster than ever before,” said Tom Looker, associate professor of Mechanical Engineering. “Students need to be immersed in learning how to create innovative products and processes so that they will be valuable employees in the workplace.”
Throughout the roundtable, representatives from Edison, Clark State Community College, the University of Dayton, Sinclair Community College, and Wright State University, as well as regional business leaders from The Design Knowledge Company, Edaptive Computing, Inc., and KTH Parts Industries, Inc., gave presentations on the type of work being carried out under the RAPIDS grant, which brings hands-on experience with technology into the classroom.