Thursday, October 22, 2015

A Day with the Future of Quality

In a guest blog to A View from the Q submitted by Edwin Garro, an ASQ Fellow and founding member of ASQ Section 6000, Costa Rica, Edwin shares his recent experience while visiting San Rafael de Poás Technical High School, in the mountains of Alajuela, Costa Rica where 15- and 16- year olds will graduate in 2017 with a technical degree in Quality and Productivity. Edwin asks whether similar programs exist elsewhere.

It has been my great pleasure to participate on the Program Improvement Advisory Committee for the Bachelor of Manufacturing Management degree offered at the University of Minnesota-Crookston. Though not a high school curriculum as per Edwin Garro's example, UMC's BMM degree program is tailored to employees of local manufacturers and includes a strong emphasis on quality principles, statistics and quality management. Per the UMC BMM program brochure the program "is designed to meet the needs of people already in the workplace and two-year graduates who want to continue their education to the bachelor's degree level with seamless integration of prior credits earned. The program is available for in-class instruction on campus, as well as through online education. The online education components of the program are delivered through asynchronous electronic communication technologies and self-directed learning." This is a unique quality management degree program specifically targeted to support area manufacturers and businesses located in rural northeast Minnesota and to help improve the marketability of UMC students.

"The bachelor of manufacturing management (B.M.M.) is a career-oriented program that prepares students to manage people and machines in a manufacturing environment. Graduates will be able to supervise a manufacturing process, manage human and mechanical resources within budgetary constraints, and assure product quality. Program outcomes:
1- play a growing role in their workplace, especially in supervision and management
2- contribute to manufacturing system technology and quality control
3- establish a quality control department and train staff to meet quality audits
4- develop grades and standards of quality
5- set up acceptance sampling and inspection procedures
6- prepare quality control charts and reports
7- control the movement of materials in the most efficient manner at the right time, to and from the correct place in the required quantity
8- do a safety audit through a comprehensive approach to problems of safety in the workplace, including meeting the OSHA standards."

Dr. Christo Robberts is the program director for the Quality Management program and the Manufacturing Management programs at the University of Minnesota Crookston. For more information please visit the University of Minnesota-Crookston webpage at

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