Despite the many things being done to promote manufacturing nationwide, there still remains an acute need for gear-specific training, remedial or otherwise. Now in its 90th year, the American Gear Manufacturers Association (AGMA), in conjunction with its AGMA Foundation and Education Council, provides that training via a number of multi-level, computer-based and hands-on teaching modules, and in a variety of settings and locations. All courses are intended to produce a better educated and trained workforce, and to improve a company’s bottom line.
Instructors and students take time for a group photo at AGMA’s Gear School at Chicago’s Daley Community College.
In-plant instruction is readily available, and can be designed to suit large and small companies; coursework can be customized to address employees’ particular learning needs. Participants must have a minimum of six months’ experience and be familiar with basic shop safety procedures and rules. Classes are kept to a maximum of 20 students. The curriculum is tailored to benefit just about anyone involved in gearing, including new hires, sales representatives, engineers, technicians, management and quality personnel. The programs are available to members and non-members alike. Here is a brief overview of the course offerings, all of which are made possible by a grant from the foundation.
The learning begins with the online Fundamentals of Gearing ($25), designed to provide students with a solid foundation for advanced learning. Successful participants of this pre-requisite course earn a certificate of achievement and the opportunity to enroll in upper-level offerings.
Next up is Gear Inspection ($150), which teaches the demands of quality assurance as it applies to gearing—why, when, and how. Students and employees learn online several inspection methods, as well as how and when they are applied. A third online course—Hobbing ($150)—has just been added, and leads the student through the basic principles of hobbing. Fees are the same for AGMA members and non-members alike.
Beyond the online program, AGMA’s In-Plant Basic Course provides classroom and plant-site hands-on training and education. The classes are taught at Daley Community College in Chicago, but AGMA also conducts them on-site.
Savvy industry professionals present courses in Gearing and Nomenclature; Principles of Inspection; Gear Manufacturing Methods; and Hobbing and Shaping.
Lastly, it should be added that AGMA’s Education Council welcomes suggestions in the ongoing development of its curriculum, as well as qualified volunteers to teach it. There are many other gear learning resources out there, too many in fact to list here. Following is the contact information for the AGMA education programs, as well the URL for an article on other schools offering a variety of gear manufacturing classes: