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Mike Flaman reaches a goal

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Mike Flaman, Retired Instructor

Mike Flaman, Retired Instructor

The Physical Education Department at the Sylvania Campus had a problem. Their once majestic white goal posts that soccer classes and local teams had used for years and years were crumbling.

"The current goal posts are in sad shape," said Mike Flaman, retired Machine Manufacturing Technology instructor. "The wheels fell off."

Minus the wheels the goal posts could still be used, but they’re old and not so sturdy, needing constant welding repairs and paint touch-ups. Athletes need these to be reliable and trustworthy when making that all important penalty kick or header to the back of the net. Weather and competitive play had worn these particular goal posts down, and buying brand new goal posts would cost the college a lot of money.

But Flaman came to the rescue in that PCC way.

With the occasional student help, he constructed two brand new goal posts from scratch in the program’s machine shop on campus. They are 20 feet wide and 9 feet deep Olympic-sized posts that now rest near the athletic field.

Flaman wasted no time in addressing the department’s need by hunkering down in the concrete slab bowels of the Science and Technology Building. He researched the dimensions and came up with an aluminum and stainless steel mix of metal to construct the posts. In total, it took him four months to design the plans, order the materials (paid for by the PE department), cut and shape the metal, and weld the pieces together in the shop. They were delivered to PE the first week of spring term – problem solved.

"It wasn’t a big job," Flaman said. "I fit it in when I could, depending on how many students were in crisis. And the grounds crew was really helpful in moving them up and down from the field a few times. It was my project. There was no charge to the college and I made them within my normal teaching hours."

Mike Flaman, Retired Instructor This sort of problem-solving and resourcefulness isn’t rare. In fact, the Machine Manufacturing Technology folks have a habit of helping departments, programs and even wanna-be inventors from the community either get something fixed or get support in fabricating a prototype. It’s a great way to introduce the community to what the machine manufacturing technology program has to offer, encouraging people to take classes so they can build a prototype or fix something themselves.

About James Hill

James G. Hill, an award-winning journalist and public relations writer, has been the Communications Specialist for the Office of Public Affairs at Portland Community College since November of 1999. A graduate of Portland State University, J... more »

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