In response to surrounding areas becoming home to multiple composites manufacturing companies, Snow College is designing a program to fully prepare students to work in composites.

The program intends to produce industry-ready candidates for manufacturing jobs across sectors including aerospace, fiberglass, sporting goods and many others. It will begin in the fall 2021 semester in partnership with ACT Aerospace in Gunnison.


Instructor Chad Avery works with Snow College students in the composites “shop,” which Avery said would always be open to students curious in following a new program in 2021.

“The composites industry is growing all the time,” said Chad Avery, a composites instructor at Snow College who has led development of the new program.

“ACT is wanting employees as soon as possible,” he added.

The school already has a composites program under the umbrella of the Utah System of Higher Education. This initiative’s curriculum will include lectures, labs and, prospectively, apprenticeship-style collaboration with local companies, Avery said.

“Composites,” Avery explained, is “replacing metal to a stronger, lighter material, from a cement to wood, but we teach advanced composites here — that is, a thermal-set resin and combining that with carbon fiber. It makes it stronger; better than metal.”

Local companies such as ACT have had some difficulty filling open jobs recently, according to Stacee McIff, Snow College interim vice president of technical education and workforce development. Snow College, she said, will use the program to “fill that gap that employers can’t fill.” Read more….