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Caterpillar Dealers honored for support of technical education

Missouri Caterpillar dealers, Dean Machinery Company and Fabick CAT, have been awarded the Missouri Association of Career and Technical Education (MoACTE) 2010 Certificate of Appreciation. 

Both dealerships, Dean Machinery Company, Kansas City, Missouri and Fabick CAT, St. Louis, Missouri, received their statewide recognition at the 41st Annual Missouri ACTE Conference on July 27 in Springfield, Missouri. 

The certificate of appreciation was awarded by MoACTE for their continued support of career and technical education achieved through their association with Linn State Technical College (LSTC).

According to LSTC President Dr. Donald Claycomb, both dealers are very deserving of this statewide recognition.  “The college has a deep appreciation of the efforts and contributions of these dealerships to the Heavy Equipment Technology (HET) program, Medium/Heavy Truck Technology (MHT) program and the Caterpillar Dealer Service Technician option,” said Claycomb. 

LSTC embarked on a partnership with Fabick CAT in the mid 1990s, intent on developing a win-win relationship to meet the needs of industry and to maximize the college’s ability to provide quality educational programs.  Not long after the initial partnership began, Dean Machinery joined, as well as E.A. Martin, which was later purchased by Fabick CAT.

Throughout this relationship, Dean Machinery Company and Fabick CAT have promoted the value of technical education throughout the state of Missouri.  Dealer representatives are active partners in recruiting, educating and hiring LSTC graduates.

“Each of these Missouri dealers has been vital to the success of Linn State Technical College,” commented, John A. Klebba, LSTC Board of Regents President.  “They have generously donated their expertise, their equipment and their dollars in support of the college.”

The Caterpillar Foundation first awarded the Dealer Excellence Fund Matching Grant to the Foundation for Linn State Technical College in 1995.  The Foundation for Linn State Technical College in conjunction with the partnership has applied for and has been awarded this grant each year since then.  Funds contributed by the foundation are matched by Dean Machinery Company and Fabick CAT. 

LSTC Foundation Chairman Clarke Thomas has a deep respect for partners such as Dean Machinery Company and Fabick CAT.  According to Thomas, without partners such as this, it would be more challenging to promote technical education throughout the state of Missouri.  “I think their corporate sponsorship and commitment to Linn State Technical College has not only assisted in promotion of technical education, it has taken it to a level of awareness not previously witnessed,” said Thomas.

In 2000, Dean Machinery Company and Fabick CAT worked with Caterpillar and Linn State Technical College to start a Caterpillar Dealer Service Technician Option in the Heavy Equipment Technology program.  This option is one of only 11 in the nation.  The CAT Dealer Service Option, also known as Think Big, teaches students to troubleshoot, diagnose and repair Caterpillar machines and engines.  As part of this program Dean Machinery Company and Fabick CAT sponsor students, provide internships for the students and hire graduates.

“Everyone wins with the Think Big program,” said Roger Haslag, HET lead instructor for the Think Big program.  “We are all working for the end result of developing a skilled technician.”

Dean Machinery Company and Fabick CAT are active partners participating in recruiting events such as Missouri Skills USA and the Missouri State FFA Convention.  In addition to these specific events, the dealers have also held open house activities at their respective locations and participated in on-campus recruiting events such as Big Look and Must SEE LSTC.  With the college, the dealers also sponsor a networking event at the Missouri Vocational Agriculture Teachers Association annual conference.  During this event, high school instructors interact with college and dealer representatives to learn more about industry needs in preparing students to continue their education and the opportunities in the industry.

This win-win relationship has grown over the years.  Dean Machinery Company and Fabick CAT representatives actively serve on the Linn State Technical College Advisory Council, where advisors meet twice a year to discuss industry trends and make recommendations for improvement to meet those needs.  Representatives also participated on the advisory panel during the design phase of the new Vehicle and Power Center.  Dealers provide much needed in-kind support in the form of equipment tooling and lab aids.  Dealer representatives also provide expertise through seminars and training for both students and instructors.  As a result of the numerous in-kind equipment donations and training, the laboratory component and hands-on experience in the Heavy Equipment Technology and Medium/Heavy Truck Technology programs has been strengthened and kept up-to-date.

According to George Stanek, HET and MHT Department Chair, this award and recognition of Dean Machinery Company and Fabick CAT’s support of technical education is well deserved.  “They have provided many man hours as advisors, trainers and judges at various competitions and the monetary support make it possible for LSTC to purchase the most advanced technological tools and equipment to assure students receive training for the latest of changes within the industry,” stated Stanek.  “They have truly been instrumental in enhancing the quality of technical training in our programs.”

With more than 35 programs, Linn State Technical College is Missouri’s only public two-year technical college with a statewide mission.   LSTC has campuses in Linn, Mexico and Jefferson City.  LSTC prepares students for profitable employment and a life of learning.    

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