Cleveland State Announces Second Class Of Mechatronics Honors Institute Participants

Friday, June 14, 2019

Cleveland State Community College has named its second class of the Mechatronics Honors Institute.   

The Mechatronics Honors Institute blends classroom instruction with on-site manufacturing experience at various industry partner sites. Classes such as Electrical Components, Mechanical Components and Electric Motors, Electro-Pneumatic and Hydraulic Control, and Digital Fundamentals and PLCs will be offered, among numerous other courses geared toward a career in the manufacturing industry.

Upon completion of the program, graduates will earn an associate degree in mechatronics technology. For those students interested in an engineering/STEAM path this will be an easy transition to Middle Tennessee State University or UTC, said officials. 

“This second group of MHI students has been exceptionally amazing to work with,” said Marci Reiter, director of Mechatronics Honors Institute. “They are all hardworking students who came highly recommended by teachers, administrators, and employers alike. It says quite a bit about the talent and skills of these students when the industry partners can’t stop telling me how impressed they were throughout the interviewing process with these student’s professionalism and overall commitment to succeed so early in life.”

In order to be selected, candidates were asked to submit an application for the college, a separate application for the Mechatronics Honors Institute, as well as a 500 plus word essay about his/her interest in the manufacturing/engineering field. These prospective students were selectively chosen and accepted based on academic success, ACT / SAT scores, written essay and commitment to work in a team and problem-solving environment. 

Participating businesses and students assigned to those businesses include:

Jonathan Contreras (Coca-Cola) 

Mr. Contreras attended Cleveland High School.

“I chose to apply because I saw it as a great opportunity to gain hands-on experience in a career that is constantly growing and will be depended on for years to come,” said Mr. Contreras. “I am extremely thankful for the companies that came in to interview us and gave us an opportunity to be selected for a spot in their facilities. I am very excited to take on this next chapter of my life.”

He plans to continue his education at either MTSU or UTC after CSCC. Mr. Contreras is the son of Jose and Maria Contreras of Charleston. 

Christian Niehaus (E & E Manufacturing)

Mr. Niehaus attended Walker Valley High School. 

“I chose to apply to the MHI in order to gain a better knowledge of mechatronics and engineering, while working hands-on," said Mr. Niehaus. "I am really excited and truly honored that I was chosen for the MHI out of so many people, and I can’t wait to go to work and start learning.”

After CSCC, Mr. Niehaus plans to attend UTC to complete his bachelor’s degree. He is the son of Doressa Wiseman Niehaus of Cleveland and Greg Niehaus of Ocala, Fl.

Axel Cortez (E &E Manufacturing) 

Mr. Cortez attended McMinn Central High School. 

“I chose to apply to help me grow and improve my mechanical skills," said Mr. Cortez. "I’m really looking forward to taking advantage of the opportunity given to me and making the most of it.” 

Mr. Cortez is the son of Juan and Maria Cortez of Etowah.

Luke Wallace (Wacker) 

Mr. Wallace attended Walker Valley High School. 

“I’m really looking forward to the internship with Wacker and the opportunities that come with it," said Mr. Wallace. "I felt like this was a great way to get work experience in a manufacturing field early in my career.” 

After CSCC, Mr. Wallace plans to continue his education at UTC. He is the son of Chris and Karen Wallace of Cleveland. 

Samuel Ohlsson (Bayer) 

Mr. Ohlsson attended Cleveland High School. 

“I’m looking forward to learning the skills necessary to be successful in the mechatronics industry, and this seemed like a great way to get hands-on experience from recognized industries,” said Mr. Ohlsson. 

After CSCC, Mr. Ohlsson plans to transfer to either UTC or UTK to continue his education. He is the son of James and Kelly Olsson of Cleveland.

Logan Smith (DENSO) 

Mr. Smith attended McMinn Central High School. 

“I felt like the Mechatronics Honors Institute would be a great opportunity for me," said Mr. Smith. "I knew it would prepare me for a future in the manufacturing industry. I am looking forward to the skills and knowledge that I will gain. I am also excited about putting the skills I learn to use in an industry setting…I feel very honored and blessed to be chosen for this opportunity. I am very excited to start next fall.”

Mr. Smith plans to transfer to UTC to pursue his bachelor’s degree in Engineering after CSCC. He is the son of Chad and Krissi Smith of Athens, Tn. 

Logan Hutcheson (DENSO)

Mr. Hutcheson attended Copper Basin High School.

"I am looking forward to gaining the skills and knowledge I will need to succeed in the manufacturing field," said Mr. Hutcheson. "I am thankful to have been chosen by DENSO for the MHI. This is an excellent opportunity for me, and I cannot wait to begin." 

He is the son of Robert and Shawna Hutcheson of Ducktown, Tn. 

Will Richmond (Bayer)

Mr. Richmond attended Polk County High School.  

“I am looking forward to the on the job training," said Mr. Richmond. "I am very happy and excited that I was chosen to be a part of the MHI program.” 

He is the son of David and Kim Richmond of Benton, Tn.

Daniel Archambault (E & E Manufacturing) 

Mr. Archambault attended McMinn Central High School. 

“This was a great opportunity for hands-on work experience, and I’m very thankful for this opportunity," said Mr. Archambault. 

Mr. Archambault plans to transfer to UTC to pursue his bachelor’s degree after CSCC. He is the son of Brad and Carrie Archambault of Englewood, Tn.

Caleb Smith (McKee)

Mr. Smith attended Bradley Central High School. 

“I’m looking forward to this co-op program and finding out what the workforce is like in this industry,” said Mr. Smith. 

Mr. Smith is undecided on his four-year college he will attend. He is the son of Sarah Bullington of Cleveland, Tn. 

Trent Bright (E & E Manufacturing) 

Mr. Bright attended McMinn County High School.  

“I am looking forward to learning more and making new friends," said Mr. Bright. "This is a great opportunity, and I’m very happy they chose me. I’m ready to get to work.” 

Mr. Bright is the son of Rodney and Stephanie Bright of Riceville, Tn. 

Matthew Robinson (McKee) 

Mr. Robinson attended Bradley Central High School.  

“I chose to apply for the MHI to further my education in mechatronics and to acquire experience as an intern while increasing my knowledge,” said Mr. Robinson. “I am excited about this opportunity because I was involved in many areas during high school and look forward to being active in college.”

Mr. Robinson plans to continue his education at MTSU or UTC in Mechatronic Engineering. He is the son of Bryan and Arlette Robinson of Cleveland, Tn.

Edi Abdulahu (Bayer)

Mr. Abdulahu attended Ooltewah High School. 

“I chose to apply for the MHI because of the great program Cleveland State offers, and I’m looking forward to the experience I will be gaining,” said Mr. Abdulahu. 

Mr. Abdulahu is the son of Muhamed and Alma Abdulahu of Apison, Tn.  

Ms. Reiter continued, “I am excited to work with these students over the next few years and watch their growth, not only academically, but professionally as well. I predict nothing but success for all 13 of these selected applicants. Cleveland State and the MHI is lucky to have such talented students choosing to attend school with us this fall. This is exactly what we have built the MHI to produce highly talented workers to fill our local industry’s pipelines.” 



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