NEW TIMES What originally sparked your interest in industrial technology?
KUTZ I was first drawn to industrial technology because it is a very hands-on major. It offers a unique combination of classes in business, manufacturing, metals and plastic fabrication, product development and packaging materials, design, and testing. I really enjoy the fact that the curriculum is lab focused, which taught me real-worlds skill sets as opposed to just theory.
NEW TIMES What kind of educational tools do your students have access to at Cal Poly?
KUTZ Students in the industrial technology department have access to many state-of-the-art labs, including packaging materials and design, packaging dynamic testing, metals and plastics fabrication, including CNC machinery. Most importantly, the students have many opportunities to work with industry partners on class and senior projects, which truly provide real world experience.
NEW TIMES What kinds of projects have your students been working on this quarter?
KUTZ In the IT 407 class, which is a product development class where students design, manufacture, market, and sell their products, there is a wide variety of products ranging from custom designed and CNC’d hardwood coat racks, adjustable water bottle cages for bikes, portable headphone amplifiers, and an innovative new product concept for to-go coffee lids and sleeves. Students in the IT Robotics club are close to completing their custom designed and hand built CNC router.
NEW TIMES How do you see industrial technology affecting the future?
KUTZ Industrial technology deals with the commercialization of new technology in many cutting-edge fields, and the entrepreneurial approach to the classes often leads to jobs in new product development, technology start ups, product engineering, as well as jobs in aerospace, biomedical, and manufacturing. Students involved with the packaging program are constantly designing and testing the next best shipping solution for the world’s products.