Northwest precision manufacturing and machining students in high demand

On January 13, representatives from Schulz Xtruded Products, LP (SXP) in Tunica visited sophomores in Northwest Mississippi Community College’s Precision Manufacturing and Machining Technology (PMM) program to discuss future internships and employment with their company.  Gail Adams, SXP employment manager, and Terry Pannell, tool and die manager, spoke to the class.

Adams explained that the Schulz Group of Companies developed a unique new pipe manufacturing process for producing a metallurgically bonded seamless clad pipe called SX-Clad and produces many other piping and aerospace products, they chose to build their only North American manufacturing facility in Mississippi. She stated that the company is looking for people who can work in precision manufacturing and machining.

“Precision machining skills are very valuable in today’s manufacturing environment and you students are going to see a world of opportunity open for you as a result of the fine reputation of this program at Northwest. We would like to keep those skills in Mississippi and hope you will consider joining the SXP team to explore the growth opportunities available with our company,” Adams said.

Pannell explained some of the specifics of the work SXP does and complimented Northwest’s program. “The program here is just phenomenal to me. I see a lot in it. We are starting and we are small, but we are looking for some students that we can train to do what we need,” Pannell said.

SXP specializes in extrusion of seamless stainless steel pipes, duplex, nickel-based and high-alloyed materials, corrosion resistant pipes and metallurgical bonded, seamless clad pipes for various applications in the oil and gas industries as well as many different titanium profiles for aerospace industry. Clients range from oil and gas companies, power and nuclear power plants, water treatment centers, chemical and petrochemical companies and aerospace companies.

SXP is a part of the Schulz Group of Companies, headquartered in Krefeld, Germany, which began with Wilhelm Schulz in 1945, and is now in 16 countries worldwide. They currently have 170 employees at their Tunica facility. This past August, they provided matching funds for the endowment of a new STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) scholarship at Northwest as a part of the Matching Funds Initiative.

“We’ve had a long standing partnership with Northwest, even before we finished building our plant. Northwest’s commitment to workforce development was a key factor in recruiting Schulz to the area, and since we are the first manufacturing facility in Tunica, we’ve relied heavily on their commitment to manufacturing for training and development of our workforce.  Northwest has done anything we’ve needed them to, including customizing classes for our employees in topics as broad as industrial maintenance to supervisory management skills,” Adams said.

Jim Gilliam, PMM instructor, is pleased that his students are in high demand. “This morning Schulz representatives spoke to our sophomore precision manufacturing and machining class about the possibilities of Northwest students beginning in an internship at Schulz. It is more than gratifying for companies to recognize the strength of our students’ skills and to look to Northwest to provide those needed skills,” Gilliam said.

The PMM Technology program at Northwest is an articulated program designed to provide advanced and technical skills to its students. The program prepares students to analyze specifications and lay out metal stock, and to set up and operate machine tools to fit and assemble parts for the manufacture and repair of metalworking dies, cutting tools, fixtures, gauges and machinist’s hand tools. A student who successfully completes the program will receive an Associate of Applied Science.

For more information on Northwest’s PMM Technology program, contact Gilliam at or visit Northwest’s website at


Story by LaJuan Tallo, Communications Assistant

Posted in Alumni and Foundation, Career-Tech, Communications, Top News Stories