Casting Call

UWM’s Certified Foundry Supports BS, MS, PhD Students

This fall, UWM was recertified for three years by the Foundry Educational Foundation (FEF), signaling FEF’s continued support for student scholarships, the college’s Foundry & Material Processing Lab, and new-graduate job placement. UWM—a FEF university since 1996—is one of just 20 FEF-certified colleges and universities and the only one in Wisconsin offering foundry education at bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels.

Foundry research and education continually evolve, and currently the college is exploring two new ventures.

Pradeep Rohatgi, UWM Distinguished Professor and Director of UWM’s Center for Composites and Advanced Material Manufacturing, is building bridges between Wisconsin’s foundry industry and local and regional emerging water-equipment industries. On Dec. 12, eight high-level representatives from Illinois-based Sloan Valve visited the campus to gauge the Foundry Lab’s advanced research capabilities, specifically its ability to develop advanced components for the water industry.

Another new initiative spotlights education. In November, Dean Brett Peters met with Patricio Gil—American Foundry Society’s new president and CEO of Blackhawk de Mexico—after his visit to the Foundry and began exploring opportunities for students from Mexico to study foundry and metal casting at the College of Engineering & Applied Science.

The College of Engineering & Applied Science is a major source of talented graduates for the foundry industry, in large part because of FEF accreditation.

“Having an FEF-certified program strengthens the senior design experience for materials engineering students and it supports our partnerships with foundry-related businesses,” says Ben Church, Associate Professor, Materials Science & Engineering. “A lot of our students pursue careers in the foundry industry and FEF helps us broadcast them well beyond the Milwaukee region.”

Recent graduates have secured jobs with companies including Boeing, General Motors, Grede, Kohler, MetalTek International, Neenah Foundry, Nemak, Signicast, Waukesha Foundry, and Waupaca Foundry.

Since 1996, Rohatgi has served as FEF’s key professor at UWM, where he has built world leadership in foundry produced advanced materials for transportation, energy conservation, water and biomedical applications.