South Georgia Tech participates in John Deere “College of Tomorrow” evaluation
Americus, GA – South Georgia Technical College’s John Deere TECH program hosted John Deere officials for a yearly evaluation of the John Deere TECH educational program recently.
The evaluation is part of John Deere corporate’s “College of Tomorrow” score card where they rank the 21 colleges in North America that offer a John Deere TECH program. Colleges are graded similar to how John Deere grades its dealerships. Colleges can earn a Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum certification.
The program evaluates several areas of the program including Facilities and Image, Processes, and Training. South Georgia Tech has earned Gold and Silver nominations since the program began in 2014.
South Georgia Technical College and John Deere Company partnered together in August 2014 to provide potential John Deere Technicians with a comprehensive two-year associate degree in Agricultural Technology and the career of a lifetime. After completing its first full year and prior to even hosting its first graduating class from the program, South Georgia Tech was recognized for having the second highest ranking in the country. The college has maintained a gold or silver ranking each year since then.
“We are very appreciative of John Deere and the dealers for their support of South Georgia Technical College and this Agricultural Technology program,” said SGTC President Dr. John Watford. “We value this input from John Deere and we will continue to work towards becoming the best program in the nation.”
Matthew Burks and Wayne Peck are the two Agricultural Technology John Deere TECH instructors at South Georgia Tech. Dr. David Finley is the Academic Dean over this program.
The John Deere TECH partnership allows students interested in pursuing an associate degree program in Agricultural Technology at South Georgia Technical College to partner with John Deere agriculture and turf equipment dealers across the Southeastern portion of the United States for a career as a John Deere technician. Students must be sponsored by a dealer to enroll in this program.
The Agricultural Technology curriculum addresses the full range of technological advances in agricultural mechanization, focusing on both John Deere’s Agricultural and Turf Equipment product lines. Students learn about diesel engine systems, powertrains, hydraulics, machine setup and adjustment, as well as high-tech AMS electronics, schematics and diagnostics computers. Students also gain practical experience and expertise working with the computer-assisted resource materials used throughout the John Deere service network, such as Service ADVISOR. The program also emphasizes communication skills and other non-core disciplines essential to a successful career in Ag service.
Students attend classes at South Georgia for eight weeks each semester and then serve an eight-week internship at their sponsoring dealer. The program is approximately two years in length and graduates receive an Associate of Applied Science in Agricultural Technology degree. Students are enrolled in general education courses and as well as their specialty classes.
Students utilize John Deere equipment, training components, and computer diagnostic tools to understand what makes equipment run. This program provides students with the instructional knowledge needed as well as the hands-on knowledge and skills to be successful in this career.
Studies indicate that there is a critical shortage of technicians in this field and the John Deere TECH partnership helps satisfy this need. John Deere dealers prefer to hire John Deere TECH students as they already have a detailed understanding of John Deere equipment and bring with them John Deere certifications in electrical, hydraulic and Service ADVISOR™.
The South Georgia Tech – John Deere partnership is just another great example of how industry and educational institutions can work together to provide a strong educational background and the trained technicians needed across the country.
For additional information on the new John Deere TECH partnership and Agricultural Technology program at South Georgia Technical College, please contact the college at 229-931-2068 or on the web at www.southgatech.edu.