22 California Food Producer EDITION 2, 2017 whether it is participation as members of our advisory committees, providing advice regarding industry training and education needs, or via workplace learning opportunities such as internships and apprenticeships. To discuss partner- ship opportunities with the WHCC Farm of the Future, contact Terry Brase, Interim Director of Farm of the Future at 559-934-2709 or via email at terrybrase@whccd.edu ALEX ALEXANDROU, FRESNO STATE INDUSTRIAL TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM Tell me about your program. Industrial Technology is a field of study designed to prepare technical and/or management oriented professionals for employment in business, indus- try, education and government. Industrial Technology is primarily involved with the management, operation and maintenance of complex technological systems. What are they doing to prepare students to work in manufacturing? Students will attend a number of courses that will provide them with technical and management skills. Major areas of teaching are automation, quality control, lean manufacturing and manufacturing processes. Typically, the graduate finds employment as a Manufacturing Engineer, Process Engineer, Production Supervisor, Quality Systems Engineer, Technical Specialist and Plant Manager. Positions in industrial and technical sales, design and testing also offer the graduate abundant opportunities. What is unique about your program? The program is unique because it is oriented toward the needs of the local agricultural/food processing industry and also the local manufacturing industry. Do students get hands-on experience with modern technology? "Hands-on" lab participation in most Industrial Technology courses, too, is incorporated in the curriculum to promote rapid student mastery of subjects. It is a teamwork approach between faculty and students that ultimately enables the Industrial Technology graduate to emerge with the skill and confidence required for supervisory positions in the industry. The department was the recipient of a state-of-the-art citrus packing line which can be viewed at https://www. cacitrusmutual.com/fresh-fruit-packing-line-opens-fresno- state/. It also has two state-of the-art Autonomous Ground Vehicles (AGV), a number of smaller AGVs and a number of drones. WHCC owns the Farm of the Future, which sits on two parcels totaling 213 acres that acts as a physical lab for West Hills students. Additionally, the Farm of the Future boasts 18 welding bays furnished with state-of-the-art welding equipment. The land the Farm of the Future grows on and welding bays it owns provide a real world environment that allow WHCC students to learn problem- solving skills while gaining hands on experience. What are they doing to prepare students to work in manufacturing? WHCC offers courses in control systems, sensor technology, ArcGIS, AutoCAD, drones and robotics, irrigation and soil sciences, welding and mechanical fabrication and industrial maintenance technician. These courses provide a mixture of fundamental skills and technology that our manufacturing partners have requested. What is unique about your program? WHCC caters to the working professional. Most of our classes are offered in hybrid format, with online lectures and face-to-face lab sessions. The lab sessions are evenings and weekends to accommodate typical work schedules. Student success is our primary focus. As a result, we provide excellent student support services. Do students get hands-on experience with modern technology? As a community college with a strong career technical education focus, WHCC shares the opinion expressed by Charles Eliot in his inaugural address as President of Harvard College. Eliot said “The University recognizes the natural and physical sciences as indispensable branches of education, and has long acted upon this opinion; but it would have science taught in a rational way, objects and instruments in hand—not from books merely, not through the memory chiefly, but by the seeing eye and the informing fingers…” West Hills does this using our ag science and industrial programs along with its Farm of a Future. WHCC provides its students with practical application of science and technical concepts taught in class. Are the students also developing “soft skills?” As stated previously, WHCC has a Career Technical Education focus. As a consequence, we place great emphasis on soft skill development, including oral and written communications, team work and team building, integrity, confidence, punctuality and common sense. How can food processors establish a partnership with their programs? The Ag and Industrial Science Department at West Hills College Coalinga is always looking for partners,