MCC alum becomes Manufacturing Technology instructor
McHenry County College alum Broc Ungaro loves the manufacturing field so much that he quit his highly-paid job as a tool room manager to become a full-time manufacturing instructor at MCC this fall.
Ungaro, who earned his Associate in Applied Science degree in manufacturing technology from MCC in 2011, brings nearly 20 years of experience to the classroom to inspire students to pursue careers in manufacturing, where there is a shortage of highly-skilled workers.
"I want to pass on my knowledge and get students enthused about manufacturing careers because there is a scarcity of workers with these types of skills," he said, referring to blueprint reading, running manual mills and lathes, manufacturing processes.
"The cool thing about manufacturing is working with steel or plastic and creating something useful," he said.
"Plus, you get a little pride seeing parts that you've worked on end up on store shelves," he said, referring to Nextel and Motorola cellphones, caps on medicine bottles and spray paint cans and even pusher trackers, the plastic devices on store shelves that push toothbrushes and cosmetics forward on shelves.
"Manufacturing can be a career, not just a job," he said. "Manufacturing facilities are not dark dungeons that you see in documentaries and in movies. They're (clean) and very safe trades to be in.
"I made two goals in life -- to cut steel and to join the Army," he said, adding that he has achieved both.
He first became interested in machine shop while a student at Woodstock High School in the early 1990s, and worked part-time as an apprentice for a local manufacturer before joining the Army in 1994. He served until 1998 and then went to work at a different company, where he enjoyed working with molds, making parts and performed maintenance of the molds.
Ungaro describes his new role as an instructor as rewarding.
"It's great to see students engaged in their assignments and asking questions," he said. "The other day they wanted to discuss tariffs and how they affect manufacturing."
Not only does Ungaro prepare students to come away with solid skills in machining and fabrication, but also teaches the soft business skills such as punctuality, good attendance and communication to make them more marketable employee candidates.
Ungaro resides in Wonder Lake with his wife and their three children.