New partnership between Kubota, Fox Valley Technical College to support outdoor power industry

Fox Valley Technical College
A partnership between Fox Valley Technical College (FVTC) and Kubota Corporation is a new initiative that recently kicked off to help  shape the next generation of skilled technicians.

The proverbial “win-win” language used in successful partnerships took another step toward authentication during the kickoff of a new initiative between Fox Valley Technical College (FVTC) and Kubota Corporation — a growing manufacturer of customized equipment for the agriculture, construction, and outdoor power industries. 

“This is a win-win-win partnership poised to shape the next generation of skilled technicians by benefiting industry, schools and students,” said Branden Brown, an instructor for Kubota Tractor Corporation.

Brown and his colleagues joined representatives from Kubota dealerships, along with college officials and students, in a special ceremony on Aug. 8 at FVTC’s Service Motor Company Agriculture Center in Appleton to highlight the latest industry-specific training strategy at FVTC.

NC3, or National Coalition of Certification Centers, is a Kubota Tech pilot program offering six certification competencies for students at about 30 colleges in the nation. FVTC is the second college in Wisconsin to offer a train-the-trainer event for Kubota Tech, resulting in an embedded curriculum for students in the Agriculture Power Equipment, Agriculture Equipment Service Technician, and Outdoor Power Equipment Technician programs.  Graduates from those programs can now receive an NC3 credential with their technical diploma or associate degree.

Competencies involve applications in inspection and assembly, maintenance procedures, engine operations, electrical applications, preventative maintenance, and hydraulics. The instruction will include use of the latest technologies like a Kubota B Series tractor, residential mower, and side-by-side Rough Terrain Vehicle, or RTV.  

“Adding NC3 certification to the knowledge base of an already experienced faculty will make our agriculture-related programs even more relevant,” said John Sorenson, an associate dean at FVTC. “Building excitement for work in an in-demand field makes for a promising pathway for students looking for a hands-on, high-tech career.”

According to Kubota officials, an estimated 3,400 new technicians will be needed at their dealerships by the year 2022. Brown said by that time 50% of the outdoor power workforce using Kubota equipment will have less than five years of experience.

“We are excited to see that this very young program is off to a good start,” Brown added.

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