"We've long been committed to helping schools continue in the woodworking element because we all know it is dying, and without future woodworkers, we're not going to have a business, a job or an industry," says Catherine Helshoj, vice president of Laguna Tools.
"Laguna is a new dealer for Festool and based on my conversations with Catherine, it is one of the key missions within Laguna to get the tools within the hands of students as well," says Michael Williams, spokesman for Festool-USA. "They have been putting their own products in those programs for years, and so it was a perfect match."
Everything involved with the Festool program goes through its dealers. Except for spare parts, the company doesn't sell its products directly to anyone. Since the Festool Educational Support Program began, hundreds of schools have become involved. Popular products include the company's drills, Domino joinery system, TS plunge saws, Rotex dual-mode sanders and CT dust extractors.
"We've had the Festool Educational Support Program for the last two or three years," says Williams. "We allow our dealers to go out and find schools that meet the requirements. They have to be accredited; either a trade-oriented school or a high school. The idea is to get the tools in the hands of the next generation of woodworkers. It also helps the dealers because it provides good incremental business."
Festool USA, Tooltechnic Systems LLC, 400 N. Enterprise Blvd., Lebanon, IN 46052. Tel: 888-337-8600. www.festoolusa.com
Laguna Tools, 17101 Murphy Ave., Irvine, CA 92614. Tel: 800-234-1976. www.lagunatools.com