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Minnesota State College Southeast
A Technical & Community College

Career Area: Musical Instrument Repair & Building
Campus(es): Red Wing

Students from all over the world come to Red Wing to learn how to repair, design, and build guitars.

The Guitar Development and Production diploma takes lutherie to a higher level of challenge. The program is designed for students who have successfully completed Guitar Repair and Building.

In Guitar Development and Production, you will take on more complex projects involving archtop construction, intricate inlay, and advanced finishing. You’ll also gain experience in more demanding repair work, such as fixing broken headstocks, using patches and splines, bridge plate removal, and techniques for flattening acoustic tops.

Successful students are detail-oriented, highly motivated, and have the ability to sit at a workbench and stay focused on their work all day.

Design and build your own instruments

Students in Guitar Development & Production learn how to use CAD (computer aided design) software and CAM (computer aided machining) to create custom instrument body, headstock, bridges, and other instrument components.

Students build at least two instruments over the course of the year. All students construct either an archtop guitar or an A-model mandolin. In addition, students build a custom instrument of their own design, selecting the body style, tone woods, bracing pattern, neck dimension, headstock shape, rosette, binding, inlay, and other elements. This is an opportunity for students to express their highest level of craftsmanship and creativity!

Optionally students will complete additional projects during Guitar Development and Production. At the end of the year, first- and second-year student instruments are displayed and played in concert by professional musicians at the annual Student Guitar Show.

Our graduates are in high demand, working in music stores, independent repair shops, and instrument manufacturers. Many go on to start their own businesses in guitar repair and building.

Apply now for admission to MSC Southeast
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Career Field: Engineering, Manufacturing & Technology
Cluster: Manufacturing
Pathway: Maintenance, Installation & Repair
Recommended high school classes and basic job/program skills

Download the Program Plan


No information on that Major was found.

Estimated Costs for this Major

Approximate Tuition/Fees:$8,369
Minimum Tool Cost:$1,870
Estimated Total:$10,259


Career Opportunities

  • Music Stores
  • Repair Shops
  • Guitar Makers
  • Entrepreneurial Opportunities


Program graduates will be able to:
  1. Diagnose, adjust, and repair, set ups, action, and intonation.
  2. Identify and understand parts and materials, and their use and characteristics.
  3. Safely and accurately use hand and power tools.
  4. Design and build a string instrument.
  5. Diagnose, estimate costs, and perform most guitar repairs.
  6. Perform finishing processes and touch up.
  7. Use the math, communications, and computer skills needed in lutherie.


  • Unique in length and comprehensiveness in the United States
  • Additional career for musicians and teachers
  • No previous musical or woodworking experience necessary


Brian Boedigheimer
Brian Boedigheimer received his diploma in Guitar Repair and Construction from Red Wing Technical College (now MSC Southeast) in 1994. For 12 years he provided service for music stores throughout the St. Croix Valley. He also worked on designs and built electric guitars with the Benedict Guitar Company. In 2003 he attended the Wood Finishing Technology Program at Dakota County Technical College. Currently he teaches full-time in the Guitar Repair and Building Program and in his spare time he designs and builds his own line of instruments.
Stephen Rossow
Steve Rossow earned diplomas from the Guitar Repair & Building and Violin Repair programs in at MSC Southeast 2002. He apprenticed with luthier John R. Waddle in Saint Paul, under whom he studied violin making and restoration. Returning to MSC Southeast as a full-time instructor in 2010, Steve designed a curriculum for incorporating CNC work into guitar making and teaches computer-aided drafting and CNC in second year guitar program. He also teaches in the Violin Repair program.
David Vincent
David Vincent earned his certificate from the Roberto Venn School of Luthiery, and then worked as a repair technician for 6 years at E.M. Short’s Guitars and Wichita Violin Shop in Wichita, Kansas. He has taught at MSC Southeast since 1984. David has built more than 50 instruments and helped students build over 600 instruments. He has made the guitars that are the first place prize for the Minnesota Flatpicking Guitar Championship since 2009.


Other Majors in the Guitar Repair & Building program

Electric Guitar Building CERT

Guitar Repair and Building DIP

Instrument Close Ups

Learn more about the musical instrument repair programs on our Red Wing campus at


© 2021 Minnesota State College Southeast

RED WING CAMPUS | 308 Pioneer Road | Red Wing, MN 55066 | 651-385-6300
WINONA CAMPUS | 1250 Homer Road | Winona, MN 55987 | 507-453-2700

Minnesota State College Southeast is an affirmative action/equal opportunity educator and employer. ADA accessible. MSC Southeast is committed to a policy of nondiscrimination in employment and education opportunity. No person shall be discriminated against in the terms and conditions of employment, personnel practices, or access to and participation in, programs, services, and activities with regard to race, sex, color, creed, religion, age, national origin, disability, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, or sexual orientation. In addition, discrimination in employment base on membership or activity in a local commission as defined by law is prohibited.


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