ARKANSAS CITY, KANSAS, US — The International Association of Operative Millers (IAOM) and Cowley College is offering a fully online, one-year vocational program about flour milling technology.

The Cowley College milling technician certificate program is taught by veteran milling experts, two certification levels are offered. Fall courses begin Aug. 24.

Two certification levels are being offered: a milling only coursework or milling and mechatronics coursework.

The Certificate A program includes only the five wheat flour milling courses plus the internship class. It still spans one year but does not include any of the mechatronics courses. It is designed for those individuals who already have the mechanical skills required for the milling environment and want to focus on just the milling courses. It is a 17-credit hour program.

The Certificate B program includes both the milling and mechatronics courses along with an internship component. This is the first program developed that has been offered to date. It is a 32-credit hour program spanning one year.

The certificate program prepares candidates to work in flour mills as an associate employed in a variety of positions in a modern mill. Studies include basic math needed for the mill environment, as well as an overview of equipment, electronics and electricity, and pneumatic fundamentals. Students will be introduced to the milling process, wheat characteristics, the industry, and the various requirements of the gradual reduction process in making wheat flour. Quality assessments will be an integral part of studies.

Each course is divided into weekly modules where students view a recorded lecture and supplemental videos, complete required readings in The Fundamentals of Flour Milling textbook and participate in discussions with fellow students with feedback and guidance from an instructor.

Each module includes a hands-on lab experience that simulates a particular task in the mill, all tied to the concepts being learned that week. Students receive feedback and guidance from an instructor who brings career-long expertise and perspective of the industry.

“This program has better given me a deeper understanding of why things are the way they are,” according to a recent graduate. “I couldn't be happier with the knowledge I have gained and accomplishments I have achieved while attending. Through the course of the program, my leadership noticed a positive change in my milling knowledge, and they grew to have more confidence in me and my decisions. This course has given me more confidence in my decision making at my facility.”

Cowley College and IAOM have partnered to develop this program to train technicians working in flour mills. This approach is designed to help meet industry demand and connects students to career opportunities after completing just two semesters and an internship. All courses earn college credits and are delivered in an online format except for the internship.

To register or for more information about the program visit the certificate program website.