Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 8

photos courtesy State Technical College of Missouri

BLUE-COLLAR COLLEGE
State Tech trains for today's jobs

by Jim McCarty | jmccarty@ruralmissouri.coop

L

Above: State Tech's Practical Nursing Technology program moves into a new state-of-theart building for the fall semester. Below: Robotics and automation play a big role in today's
industry, and State Tech students get ample training on the latest equipment.

ike a lot of high school graduates, Zacary Baladenski wasn't quite sure
what he wanted to do after graduation. He considered playing college
baseball or football. He worked awhile on the family farm and at other
jobs. Eventually his quest for a career led him to Linn, home of State
Technical College of Missouri.
"I went there trying to figure out what I wanted to do," he said of his initial
visit. "I saw they had a turf program. They had some kids go to baseball teams
and big time golf courses. I used to help my baseball coach before games, getting
the field ready. I really enjoyed that."
After a year at Missouri's premier technical college, Zacary found himself
prepping the diamond at an altogether different level. His training at State Tech
led to an internship with the Boston Red Sox, where he was the pitcher's mound
specialist at Fenway Park among other duties.
The Paris, Missouri native is just one student who has found his niche thanks
to the intensive, specialized training offered at State Tech. For most of the college's graduates, the future includes multiple job offers and a salary better than
many graduates of Missouri's four-year, regional universities.
"I think a lot of folks out there think that if you go to a four-year school you
are going to make more money than if you go to a two-year school," says State
Tech President Shawn Strong. "At State Tech, the data would show that is not
entirely true. And our placement rate, while we advertise 97 percent, a kid who
wants a job at graduation is going to have a job. Those that don't aren't looking
very hard."
He adds that State Tech ranks third in the state for student retention and
graduation, compared to completion rates of 25 to 30 percent at other two-year
institutions. "You see the end results," he says. "And you also know you are
going to have a rewarding career."
The unique college got its start in 1961 with one teacher and 20 students
sharing a room in the basement of Linn High School. Only one course of study
- electronics - was offered that first year.
Since its humble beginnings the college has graduated 12,000 students with
a host of critical skills. It offers 35 programs in advanced technical training
for both emerging and traditional technologies. Its 360-acre campus, served by
Three Rivers Electric Cooperative, features 10 buildings with technical laboratories, a public airport, on-campus housing and eight programs - ranging from
Bottom left: Welding students recently moved into a new facility designed with assistance
from welding equipment manufacturer Lincoln Electric. Below: State Tech's Electric
Distribution Systems training program was designed to train new linemen to replace those
who were retiring. Electric cooperatives have hired many of the program's graduates.



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - August 2018

Contents
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - Intro
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - Cover1
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - Cover2
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - Contents
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 4
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 5
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 6
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 7
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 8
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 9
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 10
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 11
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 12
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Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 18
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Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 20
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 21
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Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 25
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 26
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 27
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 28
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 29
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 30
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 31
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 32
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 33
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 34
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 35
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 36
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 37
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 38
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 39
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 40
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 41
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - 42
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - Cover3
Rural Missouri - August 2018 - Cover4
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