Published September 30, 2006
A designed intent of the Mechatronics Education Center is to foster statewide mentor relationships between MEC businesses and partner high schools. This is occurring in a number of locations through MEC business-high school partner communications in Nebraska.
Cargill Meat Solutions in Schuyler has set a high standard as an MEC mentor for secondary education. Cargill has provided over $16,000 to Schuyler Central High School for the purchase of equipment to support the school’s technical programs. Cargill purchased seven electrical trainers for Schuyler Central students to use in the MEC course offering in the fall. Additionally, Cargill enabled the school to purchase 14 brand new computers at the start of the fall semester. The Cargill plant in Schuyler and the Cargill Corporate office each provided half of the funding for the computers. The new computers will be used in multiple roles in technical training at the high school including the MEC electricity course and the CAD program.
“From Cargill's generous support, we are able to provide our students with the latest materials needed for higher education,” said Edward Fejfar, Schuyler High School counselor. “Now students will be better able to participate in the Mechatronics Training program. We would not have been able to provide the most up-to-date equipment without Cargill's help.”
In August, seven Schuyler Central students enrolled in Concepts of Electronics I at Central Community College which is delivered at the high school through a web-based method designed for MEC participant businesses and schools. Cargill has supported the Schuyler Central with classroom instructional support each day of the week for 1 ½ hours per day.
Bill Rupp, Cargill Beef business unit leader, said Cargill is proud to work with Schuyler Central High School to enhance educational opportunities for the students in the Mechatronics Training program.
“The future success of companies such as Cargill, as well as our community, depends on the ability of young people to learn the important skills gained in the Mechatronics training program,” Rupp said.
Cargill also is offering an academic opportunity for students who wish to pursue a two-year degree in the certain technical programs. The “Nourishing Your Potential” program provides qualified students with two complete years of tuition, fees, books, and room and board in exchange for working fulltime for 24 continuous months upon graduation.
Cargill employs over 2,000 people in Schuyler which has a population of 5,400. Many students Schuyler Central have relatives who are employed at Cargill so the relationship between the two MEC partners is vital for both.