Half-century old tool serves Sartell students again

Half-century old tool serves Sartell students again


Thanks to support from a local company, a shop tool from the original Sartell High School is again ready to serve students.

The machine, a vertical mill, was in relative disrepair until DeZURIK stepped up and paid for a technician to repair and upgrade the machine.

In addition to returning the tool to working order, a digital screen was added. The addition allows for accuracy to the 1,000th of an inch to be seen on a digital screen instead of reading a dial.

Other than the digital screen, the basic machine design has not changed much in 50 years, according to technology education teacher Nick Phillips. A new machine costs about $18,000.

The vertical mill is used in the school’s metal classes taken by 450 to 500 students a year for drilling holes and carving metal.

DeZURIK offered to replace the mill with a new or used machine or update the old one.

“We didn’t have the heart to throw it out,” technology education teacher Joe Schulte  said. “It was here when my dad took shop classes in 1970.”

“If you took a shop class at Sartell High School, you likely saw or used this machine (during) the last 50 years. After its reconditioning, courtesy of DeZURIK, it is good for another 50 years,” Schulte wrote in a report about the vertical mill.

In addition to funding the machine upgrade, DeZURIK regularly offers internships for the school’s technology students and occasionally hires a student right after graduation.

“They are impressed with the students we send there,” Phillips said.

The relationship with DeZURIK is part of the school’s Career and Technical Education Advisory Committee. Another committee member, Northern Metal Products, donated 10 welding tables worth about $10,000.

Maintaining an advisory committee of related industries and businesses helps the school keep its certification, which includes eligibility for federal grants. Teachers also need to maintain their certification showing they have the appropriate skills and knowledge, a process that takes 80 to 100 hours, Schulte said.

Article courtesy of the Sartell Newsleader