Archive

April, 2016

BSC and NDSCS announce joint Pharmacy Technician degree delivery in Bismarck

April 29, 2016

Collaboration will address western ND shortage in vital healthcare role

A documented shortage of pharmacy technicians has inspired a partnership between the North Dakota State College of Science (NDSCS) and Bismarck State College (BSC) to deliver the NDSCS Pharmacy Technician program to the central and western portion of the state beginning Fall 2016.

Students will enroll through NDSCS but may attend classes in Bismarck. General education classes will be provided by BSC, while the technical components of the program will be taught by Wahpeton-based NDSCS Pharmacy Technician faculty through interactive video and online classes. Students will be able to earn either a 2-year A.A.S. degree or 1-year Certificate from NDSCS.

"The partnership between Bismarck State College and North Dakota State College of Science is an example of how shared services and campus collaboration can meet changing demands in North Dakota," NDUS Chancellor Mark Hagerott said. "Our students now have even greater opportunities for success, right here at home."

“By working together, BSC and NDSCS will help fill the critical shortage of Pharmacy Technicians in central and western North Dakota,” said NDSCS President John Richman.  “Students will benefit from face-to-face and synchronous virtual classroom instruction.”

The Pharmacy Technician program prepares students for careers performing and managing the technical functions in pharmacies and pharmacy-related industries. Pharmacy Technician graduates can register with the North Dakota Board of Pharmacy and are eligible for national certification. Pharmacy technicians are found in community, hospital and home health care pharmacies, as well as research institutions and manufacturers. Graduates benefit from 100 percent placement in this high-demand career field.

“As part of the North Dakota University System we are delighted to partner with NDSCS,” BSC President Larry C. Skogen said. “It’s exciting to be able to work together and offer a program that will meet such a need in central and western North Dakota.”

To learn more about the NDSCS Pharmacy Technician program at BSC go to NDSCS.edu/PharmTechatBSC.

NDSCS Faculty and Staff receive annual College Awards

April 27, 2016

Eight North Dakota State College of Science faculty and staff members have been chosen and named recipients of the College’s Excellence in Teaching Award and Excellence in Service Award for the 2015-2016 academic year.

The Excellence in Teaching Award recognizes instructors who, among other outstanding characteristics, demonstrate competence and sincere interest in their subjects, present material in a suitable, well-integrated fashion and encourage participation from students. Selection criteria include student evaluations, feedback and deliberations by the selection committee. This year’s recipients were chosen by a selection committee comprised of faculty members, students, academic deans and staff members from a group of 70 nominees.

The honorees are:
Rhonda Edwardson: Allied Dental Education Associate Professor
E. B. Floersch: Diesel Technology Assistant Professor
Jeff Hart: Social and Behavioral Sciences Associate Professor
Kathy Marquette: Business Administration and Management Associate Professor

The Excellence in Service Award recognizes employees who consistently go above and beyond every day and exemplify the College’s values of learning, integrity, flexibility and excellence. Nominations are open to those serving in the professional, clerical, trades and service positions that are not on probationary status with recipients chosen by Human Resources and the Rewards and Recognition Committee.

The honorees are:
Kijia Homes: Student Success Office Manager
Kerri Kava: Student Life Assistant Director
Lynnette Krack: Automotive Technology Assistant
Ryan Meisch: Facilities Management Campus Plumber

Excellence in Teaching Honorees, pictured left to right: Kathy Marquette, Jeff Hart, Rhonda Edwardson, E. B. Floersch
Excellence in Teaching Honorees, pictured left to right: Kathy Marquette, Jeff Hart, Rhonda Edwardson, E. B. Floersch

 Excellence in Service Honorees, pictured left to right: Kijia Homes, Ryan Meisch, Lynnette Krack, Kerri Kava 
Excellence in Service Honorees, pictured left to right: Kijia Homes, Ryan Meisch, Lynnette Krack, Kerri Kava

 

Daily News: Band director prepares to pass baton

April 25, 2016

By Frank Stanko

After 36 years with NDSCS, Laurie Lekang leads final concert Monday

The year was 1980. America was preparing for a presidential election. The Daily News cost a quarter an issue. And Laurie Lekang joined the staff of Wahpeton’s North Dakota State College of Science as a part-time instrumental music director.

Lekang, now chairman of NDSCS’ performing arts department and director of instrumental music, will lead her final concert for the school at 7:30 p.m. Monday, April 25 in the Bremer Bank Theatre. NDSCS’ Stage Band will be joined by the Wildcat Singers. The event is open to the public and a reception will follow in the theater’s lobby.

“I’m a completely different person than when I started,” Lekang, 61, said. “I feel like I grew up here.”

Leaving NDSCS isn’t regretful for Laurie, but rather, moving onto a whole new stage. As she reflects on the joys of being a longtime band director, like hearing new generations of students play her favorite songs, Lekang insists she’s happy to hand over her baton.

“I had a lovely time here. I loved it, but I think it’s time for a new person,” she said.

Lekang anticipates her family’s relocation to a home on the lake near the Phelps Mill in Otter Tail County, Minnesota. Although she is from Campbell, Minnesota, and attended Minnesota State University Moorhead for college, her ties to NDSCS remain strong. Having siblings, a husband and daughters who are alumni helps.

“It’s just been a big part of my life. And my daughter, Sarah, married the trumpet player she stood beside when they were going to school here, and I have three granddaughters with that couple. Isn’t that fun?” she asked.

Fun is important to Lekang, who describes conducting as a cloud nine experience.

“I want my students to have a great time. I want my audience to love my students as much as I do. Even if it’s my last one, that’s just been my goal. That would be the grand finale to me, if the audience has a good time at the concert,” she said.

Lekang conducts a stage band, which she explains is a “show group, and that’s a lot different than being a musical group.”

“We like to get the audience involved,” she said. “We like to do contemporary, identifiable music. We like to do it in styles that the audience can relate to. It’s a musical experience, but also an entertaining experience.”

The week of April 18, Lekang and her students embarked on a regional tour, visiting schools the band members had attended. These type of school visits have been a tradition for the NDSCS Stage Band, one choir director Bryan Poyzer remembers with fondness from his youth.

“The only thing I knew about NDSCS was Laurie Lekang and Tilford Kroshus,” he said. “They are, in a lot of ways, the public faces of NDSCS.”

Although Poyzer and Lekang only worked together for one school year, he’ll remember it fondly, jokingly wondering “How do you fill Laurie’s shoes?”

“It’s been apparent how much she’s meant to students because a lot of them have reached out to her this past year,” he said. “You’ll see things on Facebook, you’ll hear from students, 20, 25 years back.”

Lekang has fond memories of Kroshus, who spent 30 years with NDSCS and mentored her.

“He was like a big brother to me,” she said. “I could never keep up to his energy and his experience, but it was a good, good thing working with him.”

Reflecting on her long-time dream of teaching college-level music, Lekang admitted she took a risk joining NDSCS as a half-time instructor.

“I just thought it was an opportunity that I didn’t want to miss,” she said.

An associate psychology and human relations professor, Lekang noted the importance of teaching students to get along with one another, especially as they enter the workforce. It’s an easy lesson for the longtime entertainer, who finds wisdom not only from her students and her audience, but from T-shirts.

“There’s one that music educators wear, ‘I get to listen to my favorite band everyday, because it’s the one I teach,’ and that suits me,” she said.

The Bremer Bank Theatre is located at NDSCS’ Stern Cultural Center. Although there is no admission fee for the concert, freewill offerings are encouraged.The year was 1980. America was preparing for a presidential election. The Daily News cost a quarter an issue. And Laurie Lekang joined the staff of Wahpeton’s North Dakota State College of Science as a part-time instrumental music director.

Lekang, now chairman of NDSCS’ performing arts department and director of instrumental music, will lead her final concert for the school at 7:30 p.m. Monday, April 25 in the Bremer Bank Theatre. NDSCS’ Stage Band will be joined by the Wildcat Singers. The event is open to the public and a reception will follow in the theater’s lobby.

“I’m a completely different person than when I started,” Lekang, 61, said. “I feel like I grew up here.”

Leaving NDSCS isn’t regretful for Laurie, but rather, moving onto a whole new stage. As she reflects on the joys of being a longtime band director, like hearing new generations of students play her favorite songs, Lekang insists she’s happy to hand over her baton.

“I had a lovely time here. I loved it, but I think it’s time for a new person,” she said.

Lekang anticipates her family’s relocation to a home on the lake near the Phelps Mill in Otter Tail County, Minnesota. Although she is from Campbell, Minnesota, and attended Minnesota State University Moorhead for college, her ties to NDSCS remain strong. Having siblings, a husband and daughters who are alumni helps.

“It’s just been a big part of my life. And my daughter, Sarah, married the trumpet player she stood beside when they were going to school here, and I have three granddaughters with that couple. Isn’t that fun?” she asked.

Fun is important to Lekang, who describes conducting as a cloud nine experience.

“I want my students to have a great time. I want my audience to love my students as much as I do. Even if it’s my last one, that’s just been my goal. That would be the grand finale to me, if the audience has a good time at the concert,” she said.

Lekang conducts a stage band, which she explains is a “show group, and that’s a lot different than being a musical group.”

“We like to get the audience involved,” she said. “We like to do contemporary, identifiable music. We like to do it in styles that the audience can relate to. It’s a musical experience, but also an entertaining experience.”

The week of April 18, Lekang and her students embarked on a regional tour, visiting schools the band members had attended. These type of school visits have been a tradition for the NDSCS Stage Band, one choir director Bryan Poyzer remembers with fondness from his youth.

“The only thing I knew about NDSCS was Laurie Lekang and Tilford Kroshus,” he said. “They are, in a lot of ways, the public faces of NDSCS.”

Although Poyzer and Lekang only worked together for one school year, he’ll remember it fondly, jokingly wondering “How do you fill Laurie’s shoes?”

“It’s been apparent how much she’s meant to students because a lot of them have reached out to her this past year,” he said. “You’ll see things on Facebook, you’ll hear from students, 20, 25 years back.”

Lekang has fond memories of Kroshus, who spent 30 years with NDSCS and mentored her.

“He was like a big brother to me,” she said. “I could never keep up to his energy and his experience, but it was a good, good thing working with him.”

Reflecting on her long-time dream of teaching college-level music, Lekang admitted she took a risk joining NDSCS as a half-time instructor.

“I just thought it was an opportunity that I didn’t want to miss,” she said.

An associate psychology and human relations professor, Lekang noted the importance of teaching students to get along with one another, especially as they enter the workforce. It’s an easy lesson for the longtime entertainer, who finds wisdom not only from her students and her audience, but from T-shirts.

“There’s one that music educators wear, ‘I get to listen to my favorite band everyday, because it’s the one I teach,’ and that suits me,” she said.

The Bremer Bank Theatre is located at NDSCS’ Stern Cultural Center. Although there is no admission fee for the concert, freewill offerings are encouraged.

Full article from the Wahpeton Daily News

NDSCS awards an additional 18 Scholarships to area Students

April 21, 2016

The North Dakota State College of Science recently awarded academic scholarships to an additional 18 incoming 2016 NDSCS freshmen from three states.

The scholarships recognize and reward students for academic achievement, test scores and participation in extracurricular and other volunteer activities. The scholarships – awarded for $1,000 or $500 – are applicable during the 2016-2017 academic year. The honorees include:

MINNESOTA
Battle Lake: Wes Olson, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $500.00; Katlyn Rilla, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $1,000.00
Breckenridge: Max Glueckert, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $500.00; Amanda Ronan, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $1,000.00
Inver Grove Heights: Gabriela Alicea, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $1,000.00
Kensington: Colden Helberg, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $500.00
Kent: Katie Tschakert, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $1,000.00

NORTH DAKOTA
Anamoose: Lee Reinowski, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $1,000.00
Cayuga: Shalyn Murack, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $1,000.00
Devils Lake: Braydi Hoime, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $500.00
Fargo: Devon Redden, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $500.00
Forman: Taylor Chapin, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $1,000.00 Grand Forks: Christopher Helmoski, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $1,000.00
Lisbon: Linsey Leadbetter, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $500.00
Mohall: Becca Schoenberg, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $1,000.00
Thompson: Colton Luck, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $500.00
Watford City: Cody Kirkland, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $500.00

SOUTH DAKOTA
New Effington: Kellie Hansen, NDSCS Foundation Scholarship - $500.00

Daily News: Auto, diesel careers test driven by high school visitors

April 19, 2016

By Frank Stanko

North Dakota State College of Science’s Wahpeton campus hosted high schoolers interested in auto and diesel careers Thursday, April 14. The event was sponsored by the partnership of NDSCS and the North Dakota Automobile and Implement Dealers Associations.

A highlight of the day was the chance to test-drive farm equipment around NDSCS’ Bisek Hall under the supervision of professionals. Visitors also experienced a typical day in the life of a technician and received expert advice from those in the auto and diesel industries.

“It drives way smoother than I expected,” Evan Jones, a high school senior from St. Francis, Minnesota, said after test driving a Case IH tractor. Jones plans on attending NDSCS for studying diesel technology.

Cody Devogt, a second-year diesel technology student at NDSCS, supervised Jones. He said today’s equipment is simple, just like driving a car.

“With the John Deere tractor, it’s easier to work with,” said Greg Wourm, a high school senior from St. Michael, Minnesota. “I could see it performing a lot better in the field.”

No matter what equipment preference students have, the bottom line of the day was business and industry. Jim Johnson, NDSCS’ Twin Cities enrollment services specialist, organized the bus trip that brought students on campus.

“It’s very possible that a student who attends today is going to be talking to his or her future employer and doesn’t even know it,” he said.

Visitors came from as far as the Twin Cities, Minnesota, metropolitan area and from Grand Forks, North Dakota, he added. Their day included not only observing the programs available at NDSCS, but attending a career fair devoted to the auto and diesel industries.

“This is our inaugural flight, so to speak and so far, we are having a wonderful day. There’s a lot of smiles, a lot of questions, a lot of fun being had. That’s the whole idea, developing relationships and uncovering the spark within some of these kids to take them to the next step,” Johnson said.

For Matthew Larsgaard, manager of the North Dakota Automobile and Implement Dealers Associations, Thursday’s event was another example of the multi-level partnership between the association and NDSCS.

“The level of training and experience that today’s young people are gaining here at the school has really benefited North Dakota’s dealerships and the citizens of the state,” he said.

Larsgaard is optimistic the visitors understood the amount of career opportunities in North Dakota’s automobile and farm equipment dealerships.

“If an individual is willing to work hard and gain the experience necessary to learn the trade, they can have a long career that’s very rewarding from both a fulfilling standpoint and a monetary one as well,” he said.

Full article from the Wahpeton Daily News

Daily News: NDSCS gears up for infrastructure improvement

April 07, 2016

By Carrie McDermott

Website was created to share information with the public

A major water and sewer infrastructure project at North Dakota State College of Science’s Wahpeton campus will get underway next month.

The $13.298 million project will replace the college’s aging water, sewer and storm sewer systems, which are between 40 and 60 years old. North Dakota’s Legislature awarded the money to the school last year for the project as a capital expenditure.

The engineering firm of Bolton and Menk, Fargo, will oversee the project. It is scheduled to begin mid-May, immediately following the end of spring semester. Joel Paulsen, public engineer with the company, gave an overview of how construction activity, including parking lot closures and street closures, will be communicated to the community during the project.

“We’re taking a multifaceted approach for communications for the project because of the size and how much public interaction we’re expecting,” he said. “At the end of the project, the campus will have up-to-date infrastructure that will last 80 to 100 years.”

A website has been created that features all pertinent information about the project and each Monday afternoon an update will be posted for the following week’s construction activities. It can be found at https://www.bolton-menk.com/clients/NDSCS/CollegeofScience/index.html and the college has a link off of its website, which can be found at www.NDSCS.edu/waterproject/. Twitter and Facebook will also be utilized to share updates and people can sign up for text alerts as well.

Every parking lot on campus will be addressed due to the scope and scale of the underground work.

“It’s not just looking at pavement that needs to be replaced or rehabbed, it’s also looking at traffic movements and pedestrian safety as well,” Paulsen explained. “We’ve incorporated angled parking to increase visibility, increased a lot of pedestrian safety elements throughout the campus, including curb bump outs and more delineated crosswalks.”

A big change will be an added north-south thoroughfare through campus, by extending Fifth Street North from the east oval to the parking lot of Norgaard and Robinson Halls.

“The impact is traffic will be contained internally on the campus. We’re taking all this traffic and putting it in the campus and off the city streets,” he said, noting residents will see reduced traffic along Fourth and Seventh streets once the road is complete.

The entrances to both the south and east ovals will get new monument signage with an arch going over the entire drive, along with new landscaping and night-time lighting. Other beautification work includes complementary landscaping around Old Main and stamped concrete, all lending a more collegiate feel to the campus.

With the underground work, some trees will need to be removed around campus, but approximately 300 new trees will be planted.

Kindred, North Dakota-based KPH was awarded the general contractor bid for all water, sewer and paving work. Scott’s Electric, Wahpeton, was awarded the bid for all electrical work. The majority of subcontractors will be local. Several civil engineering and construction students will be hired as interns to assist on projects, as well, Paulsen said.

“It’s good for the economy to have local companies on the project. A lot of people will be in town, staying in town, using restaurants and gas stations,” Paulsen said. “It’s always a boost for the local economy when there’s a project like this.”

KPH has started removing pavement this week, which will be recycled and reused in the new product used for the base of the pavement. Trenchless technology will also be used, allowing shorter road closure times as crews will just need to dig down and connect campus water and sewer systems to the city systems.

“There shouldn’t be any service outages for people adjacent to the campus,” Paulsen said. The few road closures outside the campus are expected to be for only half to one full day at a time.

A staging area for material has been set up west of the football stadium, where crushed concrete will be piled and ground up for reuse. That material will be used to supplement the gravel-asphalt material that was recycled to bring it to proper specifications to put back down, Paulsen said. “Pretty much everything will be recycled out of this project that isn’t a metal material. The metal material will be recycled but not incorporated into the project.”

The majority of the infrastructure work is slated for completion at the end of November. Finishing touches including landscaping, pavement striping and lighting will be complete by the end of October 2017.

The construction staging and schedule is divided up into three phases. Adjustments may be made to each phase as time goes on and contractors can firm up dates. As of this week, the schedule is:

  • Phase 1 – includes south and east ovals, Fifth Street extension and parking lots 2 and 3. Construction on Phase 1 is scheduled to begin promptly at the conclusion of spring semester on May 16. Work will continue throughout the summer and be completed by Aug. 1.
  • Phase 2 – West, Center, East drives, parking lot 9, Blikre Loop. Phase 2 includes West, East and Center Drives as well as parking lot 9N/9S and the Blikre Loop. Fifth Street work on Phase 1 is scheduled to begin April 4. Work will continue throughout the summer and is scheduled to be completed by Nov. 1.
  • Phase 3 – Parking lot 5 and 7 – Phase 3 includes parking lots 5 and 7. Work on Phase 3 is scheduled to begin April 4. Work will continue throughout the summer and is scheduled to be completed by Oct. 1.

An informational meeting will be held in the upcoming weeks to allow the public to hear about the project as well as ask questions. A meeting date has not yet been set.

“These are very impactful projects and affect people’s day-to-day routines,” Paulsen said. “We’re trying to mitigate as many problems as we can with good communication about what’s going on. That’s our hope.”

For more information about the projects, which include maps, visit www.bolton-menk.com/clients/NDSCS/CollegeofScience.

Full article from the Wahpeton Daily News

Daily News: Actors have fun-filled time bringing ‘Elves and the Shoemaker’ to NDSCS stage

April 06, 2016

By Frank Stanko

The brothers may be Grimm, but audiences are sure to be merry while seeing “The Elves and the Shoemaker,” the North Dakota State College of Science’s spring play.

Directed by Melissa Frank, “The Elves and the Shoemaker” will be performed for one week only, starting Tuesday, April 5 at NDSCS’ Bremer Bank Theatre.

Shoemaker Eric (Nick Bauer), his wife Fiona (Hope Krumm) and daughter Shannon (Jessica Walton) live in Grimmville, not far from an enchanted forest, the home of elves Herbie (Tory Safranski) and Zuzu (Mel Kompelien). After encountering a peddler (Lanae Ekberg), Shannon ends up with a charm that she isn’t aware controls Herbie and Zuzu. The elves would just like to have a night where they aren’t making shoes.

“We get a lot of room to be goofballs and just goof around,” said Bauer, a second-year student, about rehearsals for “Elves.” “I did seven plays in high school and this would be my eighth. I figure I’d do one more because I’m about to graduate. It was fun.”

So fun, in fact, that Safranski and Kompelien, both second-year students, can’t talk about rehearsals without bursting into laughter.

“Oh, there are a few (favorite moments),” Safranski said. “Backstage is always great, it’s always a hoot. What was it that made me fall on the floor laughing?”

“A lot. You fell a lot,” Kompelien said. “You’re going to have to narrow it down a little.”

“There was many a time where I was literally on the floor, almost in tears, I’m laughing so hard,” Safranski continued.

First-year Miranda Glenn, who plays such characters as the little old woman who lived in a shoe, revealed that all of her lines for the character are improvised. In the script, the old woman is only directed to bring up children from the audience.

“That doesn’t give you much to work with,” she said. “(Improvising) is actually kind of my specialty. I don’t have a lot of memorized lines, so everything that I do is going to have to be off the cuff. … It’s an honor that (Frank) trusts me that much, especially with so many children in the audience. It’s going to be a different audience to play with, because when we have our morning shows, with the children in the crowd, the sillier and more slapstick I can be, the better. And then when we have our evening, our college performance, I can slide things to just over their heads. It’s definitely a challenge and it’s something I’m taking very seriously, but it’s fun.”

Second-year Ekberg, who said she loves playing a villain, also enjoys getting the opportunity to get some extra mileage out her prom dress, part of the costume she wears during a brief appearance as Cinderella.

“That’s the one thing in this play, don’t forget to have fun,” she added.

Cinderella is just one of the fair maidens courted by first-year Dan Paluck’s unlucky-in-love prince.

“This play feels like something that I fit into pretty perfectly,” he said understatedly as fellow cast-members laughed. “It’s something that I just slip into and be myself, pretty much.”

With so much of the cast having acted together in last fall’s “Nancy Drew and Her Biggest Case Ever,” which was also directed by Frank, many agree there was a feeling of familiarity and collaboration throughout rehearsals.

“I’m new to (acting) myself and it’s been a lot of fun,” said Walton, a first year student.

Performances of “The Elves and the Shoemaker” are at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 5 and Wednesday, April 6, with special daytime performances throughout the week for local schools. It will run between approximately 60-75 minutes. The Bremer Bank Theatre is in NDSCS’ Stern Cultural Center. Admission is free, with donations and non-perishable food pantry items appreciated.

Full article from the Wahpeton Daily News

New Report: Skilled Worker shortage costs Equipment Industry Billions each Year

April 01, 2016

North Dakota State College of Science continues partnership with AED to address worker shortage

The U.S. heavy equipment distribution industry loses at least $2.4 billion each year as a result of dealers’ inability to find and retain technically skilled workers. The figure, based on an estimated nine percent of earnings foregone by American dealerships represented by Associated Equipment Distributors (AED), was included in a report released earlier this year by The AED Foundation (AEDF).

The foundation, established in 1991 and directed by AED members, focuses on professional education and workforce development issues specific to the equipment distribution industry. AEDF commissioned a team of public policy researchers from the College of William and Mary to analyze the industry’s technician shortage based on a summer 2015 survey of AED’s members in North America.

“This report provides a window into the current state of our industry’s workforce,” AED President and CEO Brian P. McGuire said. “Distributors have known for far too long that finding the right people is tough and it’s getting tougher. A report like this tells policymakers this isn’t just an anecdotal or local problem, it’s a national crisis.”

According to the report, the equipment distribution industry is suffering badly from the mismatch between the capabilities needed to fill technical roles and the skills possessed by prospective employees. This “skills gap” has been the focus of much analysis across the broader economy and observed by AED members struggling to replace retiring workers and grow their companies while overcoming biases against technical careers and trade schools.

AED is focused on working with its partners in education throughout North America to solve this vexing problem. AED Accredited diesel-equipment technology programs at post-secondary career and technical colleges have met the rigorous requirements of AED's national technical standards as stated in the publication, “Standards for Construction Equipment Technology.” To become accredited, schools must comprehensively prepare students in all of the following disciplines:

  • Safety & Administrative
  • Electrical & Electronics
  • Hydraulics & Hydrostatics
  • Power Trains
  • Diesel Engines
  • Air Conditioning & Heating

Today's equipment service technicians require advanced skills and knowledge to service and repair construction equipment that is increasingly sophisticated and complex, and rapidly changing. AED Accredited colleges set the industry standard for equipment technology excellence.

“The North Dakota State College of Science continues to engage with AED to provide top-notch training in an effort to narrow the skills gap. We applaud the release of this report, and call on our elected officials to support our efforts at the local, state and national levels,” stated NDSCS President Dr. John Richman.

The report found that a lack of “hard skills” is the most significant challenge dealers face in their struggle to hire for technical positions. Equipment distributors also have a job opening rate three times the national average and vacancies remain open for extended periods. Time, resources and economic opportunities are squandered as positions go unfilled because the right candidates are not available. Without training and resources to develop practical competencies, American students are simply unprepared to maintain and repair the machines that build and maintain the nation’s infrastructure. The anticipated increase in building activity associated with the new five-year highway authorization law recently passed by Congress is expected to exacerbate the problem.

“In the equipment distribution industry, the skills gap is real and it adversely affects businesses,” the report said. “These effects appear in the form of decreased expansion potential, lost revenue and lost wages, among other detriments.”

The report provides a series of recommendations including improvements to federal workforce policy and steps to strengthen community-based relationships for recruiting and developing talent. This includes equipment dealers, equipment manufacturers, technical colleges and other equipment industry stakeholders.

“The problem is daunting, but there are solutions,” McGuire said.  “Congress will consider a host of workforce and education-related policy issues this year, including Perkins Act reauthorization.  We hope this snapshot of how the nation’s skills gap affects just one industry will serve as a wakeup call on Capitol Hill and help lawmakers understand that the future health of the U.S. economy depends on tackling the skills gap head on.”

The full report is available at: http://bit.ly/AEDFSkillsGap. The one-page summary is available at: http://bit.ly/AEDSkillsGapStudy.

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