By Craig Christensen

Industrial Technology, known to many as “Shop Class”, has evolved over the years in St. Ansgar.

While many of the traditional classes like Woodworking, Welding, Construction, and Drafting are still being taught, they are being taught with a technology twist. The school has been able to keep pace with the ever-changing world of technology. The Industrial Technology program at St. Ansgar has tried to keep pace with the needs of our local industries and the Saints Manufacturing and Multi Occupational Cooperative (MOC) programs are designed give students an authentic working experience.


The Laser has allowed the Industrial Tech and Art classes to team up for many projects. The laser has given the students an opportunity to enhance their projects with great detail as well as create very detailed items. The students have designed and personalized many tumbler cups, baseball gloves, woodworking projects, and glass items, just to name a few projects. Besides student projects, many projects have been completed for members of the community.

Virtual Welder

Our students have an opportunity to learn how to weld through virtual reality. The virtual welder allows students to learn how to weld without using costly consumables. The virtual welder also gives students instant feedback on how well they performed. After the feedback, the students can utilize built in guides to help them improve their welding technique. Since purchasing the virtual welder, students have become much more efficient in the welding lab giving the student more time to learn different aspects of welding.

Computerized Plasma Cutter/Powder Coating

The CNC plasma cutter allows students to apply design concepts to the metals area. Students design their project on their computer and the computerized plasma cutter allows them to cut it out on metal with precision. Through the use of the CNC plasma cutter, the students have been able to make metal signs and parts for welding projects. 

New classes for students: Saints Manufacturing and MOC 

Saints Manufacturing is a class designed to give students an opportunity to run their own business. Students develop and manufacture a product or service. Through the process they learn basic business practices like record keeping, figuring profit or losses, and sales. The second semester students come together for the Saints Manufacturing business where students run a company that produces custom products for anyone in the community. 

The St. Ansgar Multi Occupational Cooperative (MOC) program is a work-based learning experience that allows students to work with employers to learn job-specific objectives.

Students will be able to apply classroom experiences with on the job training through local businesses. Students will have the opportunity to gain experience while working with an employer to make an informed decision about careers goals after they graduate high school.


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