Milwaukee Area Technical College

Student Preparedness

As fiscal agent and lead sponsor for the annual Sustainability Summit since 2004, MATC partners with businesses, municipalities and educational institutions to provide opportunities for experiential learning. The Summit is free for students and offers opportunities to demonstrate their work and participate in workshops by national and international leaders.

As a founding member of Mid-West Energy Research Consortium (M-WERC) and lead technical college, MATC and its students are involved in projects and learning opportunities centered on biofuels, energy storage, renewable energy, and building energy efficiency. This regional consortium provides our students with internships with local companies, joint projects with university partners and opportunity for our students to use cutting edge laboratories in the energy and controls sector.

The Water Council is a consortium of businesses and academia in the water sector and is quickly becoming an international resource on water issues. As an early member of the Council, MATC students can obtain internships with many leading companies and participate in joint projects with international experts and cutting edge laboratories. Water Council members include: Pentair, Solar Water Works, IX Power Clean Water, Insinkerator, Fund for Lake Michigan, Evoqua, University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, UWM Freshwater Sciences, and more. MATC’s Schools of Business and Liberal Arts and Sciences collaborate with the Water Council through NSF grants. MATC also works closely with local Universities on joint projects. MATC students use and benefit of both the microgrid and lighting laboratories constructed by University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee while UWM students access MATC’s ECAM facility and Energy Solutions lab.

Climate Innovation

From courses in Natural Sciences to Sociology, Engineering, Economics, Culinary Arts and Horticulture, MATC students are learning about climate change and adaptation. Since 1969, the Environmental Health and Water Quality Technology program continues to focus on environmental health and water quality. The Associate of Applied Science is recognized by business, government and industry. Key student projects include analyzing river water and drinking water at County Fairs, hosting Milwaukee River “Walk for Water” events, installing a wetland at the Environmental Education Center, beach monitoring, river and highway and cleanup, teacher training and professional education workshops recognized by the state, and implementing campus composting.

The Oak Creek campus of MATC houses the Center for Energy Conservation and Advanced Manufacturing (ECAM), a $9 million, 34,000 square-foot facility designed to answer the increasing challenges facing manufacturers in the region. 10 Specialty areas include energy auditing, commissioning, MMV, LEED, efficient Building Operator Certification, energy modeling, LEAN, Six Sigma, and HVAC digital controls. MATC’s ECAM is a showcase for the latest in HVAC, controls, renewable energies, micro-grid, and manufacturing technologies. Students in the ECAM program partner with the City of Milwaukee and the Better Building Challenge, gaining experience in energy auditing large, commercial and residential buildings, supporting the citywide 20% by 2020 energy efficiency goal. MATC is a recipient of the Department of Energy grant to expand training programs for commercial commissioning agents and energy auditors and support from Building Efficiency for a Sustainable Tomorrow (BEST) Center, sponsored by advanced Technological Education and NSF grants.

Creating Opportunity

MATC collaborated with Johnson Controls and We Energies to build the Blue Hole Project, a Photovoltaic Education Laboratory in Milwaukee. This 400 kilowatt solar generation facility is situated on 6-acres of brownfield. When built, it was the largest solar installation in Wisconsin, feeding back into the grid. Additional 40 kilowatts of solar, as well as wind and geothermal supply more than 8% of the electricity at the Mequon and Oak Creek campuses. MATC was selected to partner with NREL on a complimentary solar screening to identify further opportunities to expand our renewables portfolio. Aggressive energy assessments are being conducted with supplemental support from We Energies on all campuses with efficiency and demand reduction projects in HVAC, lighting, and plumbing aimed at reducing campus energy more than twenty percent by 2020. Heating and ventilation systems are continuously upgraded with new chillers, boilers, variable frequency drives, fume hoods, and steam trap surveys and replacements are saving tens of thousands of dollars annually. LED upgrades are taking place in parking structures, exterior lighting and building corridors. Electricity consumption has been reduced by 55 percent in these locations with close to $50,000 in initiatives and rebates garnered from the Wisconsin Focus on Energy program so far this year. Energy upgrades in the renovation of the Mequon Horticulture greenhouse renovation are anticipated to save close to 70% of the energy used by the previous greenhouse. Culinary food labs and the downtown cafeteria are composting their food scraps, diverting 1 ton of waste each week.