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Ryan Johnson, Published January 10 2013

NDSCS, CASE IH begin educational partnership in diesel technology

WAHPETON – A new educational partnership between North Dakota State College of Science and 11 Case IH dealerships across the state will be a “win-win” for customers, dealers and the future technicians who will be trained at the school, Brian Hanson said.

“They’re going to be more ready to step right into the job and do what they need to do to help take care of our customers out there,” said Hanson, general manager of Grafton-based Hansons Auto and Implement Inc.

During a Thursday news conference at the NDSCS Fargo campus, President John Richman announced the partnership for a two-year diesel technology program that will start up this fall.

During their education, 20 students accepted into the program each year will complete two internships, working directly with the dealers that sponsor them as well as getting extensive training at the school focusing on Case IH agricultural equipment and technology.

“This is one of those rare private-public partnerships that really benefit a number of sources,” Richman said.

The program on the school’s main campus in Wahpeton will be taught in Bisek Hall, which is undergoing a $10.5 million expansion expected to be completed this spring that will double the space for diesel technology instruction to about 125,000 square feet.

“If we’re not the largest in the world, we’re going to be very close to having the largest space for that,” Richman said.

The program announced Thursday is an expansion of similar partnerships already happening at the school, he said.

Barbara Bang, dean of technologies and services, said the curriculum and new partnerships with regional Case IH dealers came about after an advisory committee and more than a year of planning.

Students will need to be sponsored by one of the 11 participating dealers, with the dealers determining if that means they will provide the students assistance to pay their tuition or purchase the tools they’ll need for the workforce.

Titan Machinery Inc. President, Chief Operating Officer and Director Peter Christianson said the industry has become highly sophisticated as the technology in equipment changes and evolves.

He said the NDSCS partnership is important because it will give students a leg up, making them ready to be successful at a dealer right out of college because of the cutting-edge equipment and training they’ll experience at the school.

“We need a program to help train these young people and get them going in a career so that they can better serve our customers, so we’re really excited about being a part of this and we’re really excited to kick it off,” he said.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Ryan Johnson at (701) 241-5587

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