Americus – South Georgia Technical College President Dr John Watford recently met with representatives from six Caterpillar dealers in the Southeastern United States at the Heavy Equipment Dealer Services Technology Advisory Committee meeting “ThinkBIG” at South Georgia Technical College. The group held the meeting in the heavy equipment dealer’s service technology building designed to provide training opportunities for Caterpillar dealers.
The purpose of the conglomerate meeting was to discuss student learning outcomes, admission requirements, skill testing and educational materials, industry specific equipment, program purpose and objectives. , work program, donations, AED accreditation and additional items as well as financial and equipment loans. . Chairman Chip Handley, Vice President of Ring Power Corporation’s Heavy Equipment Training Manager, chaired the meeting.
The Heavy Equipment Dealer Service Technology Program is a unique program in which students are sponsored by a participating dealer to attend SGTC in eight week increments of college and on-the-job training. Upon graduation, students receive an Associate’s Degree in Technology and are eligible for full-time employment with their sponsoring Caterpillar dealer.
Dealers attending the meeting included: Brad Manis, Stowers Machinery of Knoxville, Tennessee; Jeff Cornwell and Jacob Pope, Yancey brothers from Austell, GA; Matt Bass and McKenzie Baine of Ring Power in St. Augustine, Florida; Chris Ellsworth of Thompson Tractor in Birmingham, AL, Duane Crooker of Blanchard Machinery in Columbia, SC, and Kevin Upton and Tony Tick of Thompson Machinery Corp in LaVergne, TN. Representatives of Puckett Machinery from Flowood, MS were unable to attend.
South Georgia Technical College staff in attendance included: SGTC President Dr John Watford; SGTC Vice President Academic Affairs David Kuipers, SGTC Vice President Institutional Promotion and SGTC Foundation Executive Director Su Ann Bird, Assistant Vice President Student Affairs Vanessa Wall; and technology instructors from SGTC’s heavy equipment dealer department, Kyle Hartsfield and Don Rountree.