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Six Sigma

Define. Measure. Analyze. Improve. Control.

Facilitator, Instructor: Dan Sommers

Dan Sommers has 22 years of service with General Electric Lighting. During these years, he has been a Design for Six Sigma Master Black Belt in Lighting Technology, a Six Sigma Black Belt in a high-volume lamp manufacturing plant, a product-line quality manager, a product-line quality project leader, a quality manager and a quality engineer. He has a M.S. in Industrial and Systems Engineering, a M.S. in Statistics and a B.S. in Actuarial Science.

Contact Us

Continuing and Professional Education
225 S. Main St.
Polsky 489
Akron, OH 44325-4104

Office: 330-972-7577
Fax: 330-972-7598

Fall/Spring Hours
8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday - Friday

Summer Hours
8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday - Friday

Six Sigma is a disciplined, data-driven approach and methodology for eliminating defective products. The fundamental objective of Six Sigma is to enable world-class quality and continuous improvement so the highest level of customer satisfaction is achieved.

To reach Six Sigma, a process must not produce more than 3.4 defects per million opportunities. According to the Six Sigma Academy, Black Belts save companies approximately $230,000 per project and can complete four to six projects per year.

The Six Sigma methodology is a project-focused approach consisting of five phases: Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, and Control (DMAIC). The DMAIC phases are used to characterize and optimize business and industrial processes. Each project must complete the phases in order:

  • Define: customer needs are stated and the processes and products to be improved are identified.
  • Measure: target performance and baselines are determined. Input/output variables are defined and the measurement system is validated.
  • Analyze: potential causes are identified and investigated by using data to establish the key process inputs.
  • Improve: a strategy is developed and the solution is linked to the cause.
  • Control: gains made by the process improvements are documented, monitored and assigned accountability.

Benefits of attending

  • Become an expert in the DMAIC process and Six Sigma tools
  • Immediate return on investment by completing a real project in class 
  • Ability to lead Six Sigma projects to improved quality of product or service as perceived by the customer 
  • Gain a status that is recognized world wide

Six Sigma Certificate Courses

Green Belt Certificate

Green Belts typically use the Six Sigma methodology to work on projects within their own work areas. They play a vital role within a Six Sigma initiative by building on Black Belts' efforts of data collection, analysis, process mapping and design of experiments. 

Avoid the drudgery of manual calculations and save time with Minitab, a powerful software package for performing statistical analysis - and highly recommended for Six Sigma use.  Minitab will be used in class and must be loaded on your laptop.  If you do not have a laptop with Minitab software, one will be provided for your use in class.  If you prefer, you may purchase a one-year Minitab license, just let us know! 

Fall Dates: October 10, 2022 - January 10, 2023

Week 1: Oct. 10, 11; Week 2: Nov. 7, 8; Week 3: Dec. 5, 6; Week 4: Jan. 9, 10, 2023

Class meets: Monday and Tuesday 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., 8 sessions
CEU: 5.60
Cost: $3,100
Location: The University of Akron Main Campus 

Register now

Black Belt Certificate

Black Belts are experts in the use of Six Sigma methodology and tools. They lead more complex projects and may also provide training and coaching to others. Black Belts may work on projects in their own areas or anywhere within the organization.

Fall Dates: October 10, 2022 - January 12, 2023

Week 1: Oct 10 - 13; Week 2: Nov. 7 - 10; Week 3: Dec. 5 - 8; Week 4: Jan. 9 - 12, 2023

Class meets: Monday and Tuesday: 8:30a - 4:30p; Wednesday & Thursday: 8:30a - 12:30p, 16 sessions
CEU: 8.8
Cost: $4,100
Location: The University of Akron Main Campus 

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Yellow Belt Certificate

Six Sigma Yellow Belts gather data, participate in problem-solving projects, and add their personal experiences to the continual improvement process. Yellow Belts gain the understanding necessary to define, measure, analyze, improve, and control their own processes, as well as assisting Green Belts and Black Belts working on larger projects.

Class meets: September 19; Wednesday 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
CEU: .6
Cost: $325
Location: The University of Akron Main Campus 

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Six Sigma Champion

This one day training program is targeted toward executives and organization leadership. It focuses on the basic skills, tools, and techniques to become an effective Champion of continual/continuous improvement projects. Understand the various aspects of improvement approaches, and how the tools and techniques fit together. Learn how to identify and select improvement projects to improve quality, safety, security, and reduce non-valued added activities in both manufacturing and business processes. Gain an overall understanding of the basic quality engineering tools and DMAIC method of Six Sigma, along with the PDCA methods of lean that identify waste and constraints to efficient processes. Understand and avoid the pitfalls of improvement initiatives. Understand the power of culture, and how to build an improvement conscious culture. Learn how to write an improvement project business case, and leave the training with an actual business case for your organization. 

Dates: TBD

  • Overview of organizational excellence continual/continuous improvement
  •  Overview of approaches and tools
  •  Continual improvement deployment

             difference between continual and continuous improvement
             Roles and responsibilities 

  • Relationship of quality, production, safety, and security
  •  To develop a project hopper to categorize prioritize and select projects
  •  Organizational culture and leadership
  •   How to build high performance teams
  •   How to write an improvement business case (exercise) - attendees should come with a list of chronic    problems within their organization
  •  Pitfalls and how to avoid them