OSU, Central Ohio chapters have strong partnership

Eric Weiffenbach remembers visiting Ohio State University’s working foundry as a boy with his father. Today, Weiffenbach (Keener Sand & Clay Co.) continues that tradition – this time, as president of the AFS Central Ohio Chapter.

Every fall, the Central Ohio Chapter and the OSU Student Chapter come together for a joint dinner and meeting on campus at OSU. It’s an opportunity for the students to present their work and network with professionals, and a chance for the pros share their knowledge and recruit students into the industry.

 “We tour their foundry and they give us a briefing of what they’re studying and their upcoming projects,” Weiffenbach said. The students do some work for the professional chapter, he added. “They’re in the process of making our speaker awards.”

The Central Ohio Chapter also announces its yearly scholarship for metalcasting students during the meeting, the most recent of which took place Oct. 18.

“It’s a really symbiotic relationship,” said Colin Ridgeway, an OSU graduate student who chairs the student chapter and who is on the board of the Central Ohio Chapter. “They really have our back.”

The chapters’ connection extends beyond their annual get-together at the university. OSU Student Chapter members are welcome at Central Ohio Chapter meetings, usually with the help of a local company picking up their fees to attend.

Ridgeway said he’s grateful for OSU’s partnership with members of the Central Ohio Chapter.

“A lot of them have had full careers in the foundry industry, and they want to give back,” he said.