voestalpine Texas announces $50,000 donation for DMC Process Technology equipment
Article by: Michael Bratten
voestalpine Texas announced this morning it is donating $50,000 to provide new, state-of-the-art equipment that enhances training for students in the Process Technology program at Gregory-Portland High School (G-PHS).
One of several career and technical programs Del Mar College offers at San Patricio County high schools, Process Technology prepares students for stable, well-paying careers with local industries.
This gift from voestalpine Texas ensures that students in San Patricio County are learning Process Technology skills with the best possible equipment. This equipment makes Gregory-Portland’s Process Technology program one-of-a-kind among high schools in the Coastal Bend.
The new equipment includes:
- A distillation tower, made of clear acrylic, simulates with water and air the same distillation process that is used at refineries to turn crude oil into products like propane, gasoline, diesel and kerosene.
- A flow skid trainer is used to teach students how to use a control valve to open and close the process flow loop. This involves an inside operator who communicates via hand-held radio with an outside operator in a process identical to that in real-world industrial facilities.
- A lockout/tagout trainer is designed for safety and enables the operator to safely shut down equipment for maintenance and other purposes.
Skills associated with the equipment can be applied to careers at refineries, petrochemical facilities and manufacturing plants, Keas added. Nearly 1,000 high school students in San Patricio County have taken DMC dual credit courses this academic year, and summer course enrollment is in progress.
voestalpine Texas is honored to partner with Del Mar College and G-PISD in promoting education that provides technical industrial training for our facility and other local industries. Skilled labor is a vital part of our success, and we look forward to continuing our collaboration with Del Mar and the school district.
As new industries continue to establish operations in the region, more and more students are expressing interest in becoming workforce ready while in high school, said Paul Clore, Ph.D., superintendent of Gregory-Portland Independent School District.
The equipment funded by this donation will be used for many years. It will support our needs for students who are being served today, as well as those who will be served by the expansion of programs when we have a dedicated Training Center at this campus.
G-PHS juniors Joe Sauceda and Trent Svadlenak spoke about their experiences in the Process Technology program at today’s ceremony.
“The new equipment makes all the difference because it gives us valuable hands-on experience,” said Sauceda, who plans to become a process technician at a local facility. “The training builds my confidence and convinces me that this is the field for me.”
“It’s important to have the equipment in front of you where you can use it,” said Svadlenak, who plans to study engineering after high school. “It gives us a good idea of what’s going on in an industrial plant, as opposed to just looking at a book.”
Del Mar College empowers students to achieve their dreams. We offer quality programs, individual attention, outstanding instruction through faculty with real-world experience and affordable costs to credit and noncredit students in Corpus Christi and the South Texas Coastal Bend area. Nationally recognized while locally focused, we’re ranked in the top two percent of community colleges in the country granting associate degrees to Hispanic students (Community College Week). Del Mar College focuses on offering our students programs that match current or emerging career opportunities. Whether students are interested in the fine arts, sciences, business, occupational or technical areas, students get the education they need for the future they want at Del Mar College.