Today’s shop classes are much different than in the past. The national enthusiasm for instruction in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math) has breathed new life into shop classes by blending traditional academic learning with hands-on experiences and practical skills many employers and colleges want. Independence Local Schools are working to meet that need by offering industrial technology courses.
The technology and engineering course at Independence Middle School engages students by working with CAD (computer aided design) programs, Vex Robotics where students build and program, and also gain hands-on experiences with pneumatics and mechanism trainers. Students also work with traditional woodworking equipment in the completion of projects. At Independence High School, students continue their pursuit of industrial technology by completing more intense individual projects and utilizing advance science, technology, engineering and math skills. The two class offerings are technology and engineering and wood and construction service. Approximately 85 students take those classes a year.
This year, the industrial technology program received an exciting addition of a computer numerical control (CNC) router. The CNC router will allow students to design and produce products that are professional quality. Currently, students Robert Artrip and Luke Clymer are producing memorabilia plaques with the Independence logo on them made from the original bleacher boards at the former high school (current middle school). These plaques will be sold as a fundraiser for the industrial technology and athletic departments.
Independence High School Students Luke Clymer, Robert Artrip and Jordan Mallernee (L to R)