Leaders & Educators unite to enhance the
future of the CNC industry

A CNC machinist is a highly skilled professional responsible for operating and maintaining machines that are used in precision manufacturing.


ducators and industry leaders from across Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming, and Nevada traveled to St. George, Utah last month for the 6th Rocky Mountain Regional HTEC CNC Educator Conference held at Dixie Technical College. 

This year 45 CNC Educators from 22 schools, along with Industry Partners gathered at the Dixie Tech campus for the two day conference. Teachers, Instructors, and industry professionals alike fostered innovative partnerships, and combined their efforts to enhance the future of CNC education and the manufacturing industry.

During the conference, educators were given the opportunity to attend industry tours.  Kraus Motor Co, a leading Harley Davidson aftermarket component shop, and Vudoo Gun Works, a firearm manufacturer, opened their doors to provide an exclusive glimpse into their operations. 

The conference also held a panel discussion where participants delved into the question of how industry and education could work together and continue strengthening and increasing the pipeline of employees in the manufacturing pathway. As the main demographic in trade are nearing retirement, the “skills gap” is real and there is a need for those in the industry to work together and help bridge the gap. The panel discussed how to encourage today’s generation to join the in-demand, well paying careers that the Manufacturing industry has to offer. Their goal was to uncover strategies and insights that could fuel mutual growth and success in the ever-evolving landscape of today’s manufacturing market. 

The Gene Haas Foundation(GHF), started in 1999 by Gene Haas, the founder and owner of Haas Automation, Inc. oversees the Haas Technical Education Community (HTEC) which is a network of Education and Industry partners across the US, Canada and globally. Representatives from Productivity Inc, the local Haas Factory Outlet, also presented checks for Scholarship Grants to thirteen of the schools in attendance. The Gene Haas Foundation supports CNC education programs by facilitating partnerships between educators and industry professionals. To date, the Gene Haas Foundation has awarded OVER $150 million in Scholarship (CNC Programs) and Sponsorship (FIRST®, SAE, competition) Grants, including roughly $7 million to High Schools and Post-Secondary CNC Programs (Technical/Community Colleges and Universities) throughout the North Central and Rocky Mountain regions, helping to build the next generation of CNC talent and ensuring a bright future for the industry.

A CNC machinist is a highly skilled professional responsible for operating and maintaining machines that are used in precision manufacturing, such as the creation of motorcycle parts, aerospace components, medical devices, prosthetics, and much more. These machines are capable of shaping a variety of materials, such as metal, plastic, or wood, with incredible accuracy and consistency. Working in the industry offers a rewarding blend of technical expertise, problem-solving, and the opportunity to work with cutting-edge technology. Machinists are an essential part in industries like aerospace, automotive, and electronics, where precision and quality are paramount. 

If manufacturing is an industry that interests you, come start your journey towards a career at Dixie Technical College. The Machining Technology program has a 99% job placement rate and will help you learn the necessary skills needed to succeed in the workforce. Apply now or come check out the program on campus! 

More Articles