MEMPHIS, TN – Registration is now open for the popular ginners school, which will be offered at three locations in 2004 - Lubbock, TX, Las Cruces, NM, and Stoneville, MS.
Now entering its 19th year of classes, the school strives to teach the basics of cotton ginning to students. However, courses are offered at three different levels depending on students’ experience.
School cooperators include USDA-ARS, the National Cotton Ginners Association and its member associations, the National Cotton Council, Cotton Incorporated, gin machinery/equipment manufacturers and suppliers, the Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service and select land grant universities.
Dr. Bill Norman, executive vice president of the National Cotton Ginners Association and a NCC vice president, Memphis, said these schools have proven to be invaluable to the U.S. ginning industry.
“Not only are gin workers getting outstanding instruction on gin operation and maintenance but in much-needed areas as gin safety and first aid,’’ Norman said.
The Southwest Ginners School will be held March 29-31 at the South Plains Ginning Laboratory in Lubbock; the Western school will be May 25-27 at the Southwest Ginning Research Laboratory in Las Cruces; and the Stoneville school will be June 15-17 at the USDA Ginning Laboratory in Stoneville.
“Each level of ginners school coursework is built on the previous level of instruction, with Level I as the foundation,” said Norman, who co-coordinates the school with Dr. Tommy Valco of the USDA/ARS Office of Technology in Stoneville, MS. “We strongly recommend that beginning students, regardless of gin experience, start with Level I .”
Level I courses include: Introduction to Cotton Ginning and the Industry; Maintenance of Auxiliary Gin Components; Basic Hydraulics; Basic Gin Safety; Maintenance and Adjustments for Seed Cotton Cleaners, Gin Stands, and Lint Cleaners; Air Utilization and Drying; and Electricity in the Gin.
The Level II courses feature: Purpose and Operating Principles of Individual Gin Machines; Efficient Operation, Adjustment, and Maintenance of Gin Equipment;
Pneumatics and Waste Collection; Electrical Systems; Hydraulic Systems; Gin Safety; and Management Tips.
The Level III offerings include: Review of Functions of a Ginning System; Electrical Systems; Air Systems in the Gin; Drying and Moisture Restoration Systems; Matching Machinery Capacities in the System; Seed Cotton Unloading Systems; Management of Seed Cotton Handling Systems; Bale Presses and Hydraulic Systems; Safety Programs and Labor Regulations; and Cottonseed Handling Systems.
Norman said the special topics/continuing education coursewill be the same at all three schools: 1) Safety and OSHA Guarding (one day), which involves hands-on hazard identification and solutions in a commercial gin;2)Air Measurement (one and one-half days); and 3) Quality Issues and New Ginning Technology Demonstrations (one half day).
This course also will serve as the continuing education course for the certified ginner program. Certified ginners may register for the entire three days or for individual parts of the course with a minimum of one day registration. Check at each location for the order in which these will be covered.
For 2004, the first aid course will be offered only at the Southwest School - Thursday morning, April 1 at the Lubbock Civic Center, site of the Texas Cotton Ginners Association Gin Show.
The registration fees are $175 per student for three-day attendance and $100 per student for single topic/single day attendance. Fees for the certification exam and for the First Aid exam are $50.
If there are questions about any aspect of the school, call: Bill Norman or Betty Thorne at (901) 274-9030 or Tommy Valco at (662) 686-5255. For specific information about the Southwest School call Alan Brashears at (806) 746-5353; for the Stoneville School, Stanley Anthony, (662) 686-3093; and for the Western School, Ed Hughs, (505) 526-6381.
Students may Register online or download a PDF version (59.7 kb) of the registration form and fax it to Betty Thorne at 901-725-0510, then send payment made payable to National Cotton Ginners Association to: Ginners School, P.O. Box 820285, Memphis, Tennessee 38182-0285. Cancellations must be made one week in advance of school to receive refund.