ABB donates over $20,000 in equipment to ATU-Ozark

Working with their Clarksville district office, ABB donated five programmable logic controllers (PLCs), collectively valued at $20,780, to Arkansas Tech University-Ozark Campus to assist with several programs that bridge skill gaps in the Arkansas River Valley.

“I get a request every couple weeks from a local industry that is in need of some sort of PLC training and there is a shortage of workers with those skills,” Justin Smith, Chief Business/Community Outreach Officer-Ozark Campus, said. “ABB recognized the need for workforce training throughout the region and state especially in specific areas like automation, PLC and advanced manufacturing. They see the value and importance of starting training early in high school and college to create a pipeline of skilled workers industry.”

Arkansas Tech-Ozark is noted for its industry training and for housing programs that assist the community by providing skilled workers. The donated PLCs will be utilized to continue the mission of Arkansas Tech-Ozark to provide quality education to help students become contributing members in the workforce and in society.

Smith said the PLCs will be allocated between Arkansas Tech-Ozark and the Arkansas Tech Career Center in Russellville. The equipment will be used in Automation Technology programs at both facilities. Skills attained by students studying Automation Technology can be applied in a variety of job contexts to include: green energy technology, electronics, medical, manufacturing and production.

“We are very fortunate to have such knowledgeable and helpful partners, like ABB, who actively assist universities like ours with accessing these skill gaps and doing what they can to bridge them.”

Pictured: Justin Schumacher(left), an ATU-Ozark Automation Technology student from Clarksville, Ron Hutain, Program Chair of the Automation Techonology at ATU-Ozark, Justin Smith, Chief Business and Community Outreach Officer at ATU-Ozark and Brandon Carter, an ATU-Ozark Automation Technology student from Booneville stand together holding four of the PLCs donated by Baldor to ATU-Ozark. The fifth PLCs is pictured open on the desk.