Brandon Barta, a March graduate from Southeast Community College’s John Deere Tech program, received the Alden J. Jindra Memorial Award at a recognition dinner preceding the commencement ceremony on March 21.
The $250 award is granted to the top graduate with the highest grade-point average in the program, located on SCC’s Milford Campus.
Barta, a 2012 graduate of David City High School, held a cumulative GPA of 3.62 while at SCC. He is the initial recipient of this award.
Since 1989, SCC has partnered with John Deere to train entry-level technicians for the company’s vast network of dealerships. Barta was sponsored by Plains Equipment Group to complete the cooperative partnership. The program is a 21-month, structured educational strategy integrating classroom study with learning through productive work experience in a field. Students are on campus participating in classroom courses during five of the seven quarters. The other two quarters involve a unique opportunity for students to demonstrate the knowledge they have learned on campus at the sponsoring John Deere dealership.
Successful graduates receive an Associate of Applied Science degree, tool allowance and tuition reimbursement. The program is fully accredited by the state of Nebraska and by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The partnership has strengthened the agricultural machinery industry and has become a model for other John Deere technician programs across the U.S. and Canada.
“Brandon will continue his employment as a service technician at the David City Plains Equipment Group location,” said Dave Stara, service manager.