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New GRTS/NCMC Degree Programs Begin August 21; Instructors Hired
C-T Friday, August 4, 2006

Beginning Aug. 21, Grand River Technical School (GRTS) and North Central Missouri College (NCMC) will be offering a new technical degree program, which will enable GRTS graduates to continue their education and earn their associates degrees while working full time. “Students will be able to do this right at GRTS, never having to leave Chillicothe,” GRTS assistant director explained.

She noted that for the first time at the school, associate's degrees will be available in the following areas: Automotive and Machinery Technology, Construction Technology, Welding Technology, and Manufacturing/Computer Network Technology.

“Individuals who have successfully completed a technical program at GRTS will be able to apply 30 hours toward any of these associates' degrees,” Caughron said, adding, “In some cases, current students enrolled in our day-time classes may be able to enroll, as well.”

Instructors for the fall semester and the courses they will teach include: Ken Estes, Electrical Systems; Chad Dudley, Precision Measurement; Don Dennis, Cabinet Making; Mike Harrington, Industrial Electronics; and Sondra Sturguess, Business Management. Classes will be held one night per week from 6-9 p.m. Each class will be worth 3 hours of college credit.

GRTS, NCMC Sign Pact for Associate's Degree
By LAURA SCHULER / C-T City Editor, Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Officials at North Central Missouri College and the Grand River Technical School have entered into an agreement which will make it easier for GRTS students to earn their associate's degrees after completing some of the programs currently offered at the GRTS.

The agreement is built on the premise that students completing one of seven programs at the school will earn up to 30 hours of college credit toward an Associate of Applied Science Degree. That, according to Roger Wolf, is something GRTS has always offered. Now, however, students who complete a program may continue their education at the GRTS instead of taking the required courses at NCMC to earn their associate's degree, he explained.

A signing ceremony to make the agreement official was held Monday afternoon, April 24, at the Grand River Technical School with NCMC, GRTS and R-2 District officials in attendance. “We are excited about this development as it creates a pathway for students to earn their degrees,” Dr. Neil Nuttall, president of NCMC told GRTS staff members. “I can't think of a better way to do this than directly involve (GRTS staff members) in the beginning.”

CAPTION: The Grand River Technical School has entered into an agreement with North Central Missouri College in which students may complete classes necessary to earn an associate's degree at GRTS following the completion of one of several programs. Pictured above are GRTS and NCMC officials who gathered at the GRTS for the signing ceremony. Front row, from left: Julie Hefley, NCMC associate dean of vocational and technical education; Dr. Neil Nuttall, NCMC president; Ron Wolf, GRTS co-director; and Dr. James Gardner, NCMC dean of instruction. Staff members and instructors from GRTS are pictured in the back rows. C-T Photo/Laura Schuler

The classes needed for an associate's degree will be taught at night, Wolf explained, which also makes the idea of continuing education more attractive to students because they can enter the work force after a full year of training at GRTS and then take night classes to earn their associate's degree while working full time. “And students may take those classes in our building, where they feel more comfortable,” Wolf explained.

After receiving an associate's degree, students will also be able to transfer their college credits easier to a four-year institution to earn their four-year degree. “This agreement helps students take a lot of small steps to get a good degree,” Wolf explained. Co-director Ron Wolf echoed his brother's sentiments during the signing ceremony. “The problem that we're facing is that jobs in the technical field are so good right now that many of our GRTS graduates find it hard to resist the salaries that are being offered rather than continue their education. With this agreement, students can work and take advantage of this program,” he explained. Ron Wolf said that earning an associate's degree is a necessity for anyone interested in taking a management position. “Just earning certificates isn't enough.”

Half of the night courses this fall will be taught by GRTS teachers with NCMC instructors heading up the other half so no new teachers will be hired, Roger Wolf explained. Programs included in this agreement for an associate's degree in Automotive and Machinery Technology are Auto Service Technology, Collision Repair Technology and Diesel Services Technology. Students interested in earning as associate's degree in Construction Technology would first complete the Building Trades program at GRTS. Those interested in earning an associate's degree in Manufacturing Technology - Computer Network Technology - would first complete one of two GRTS programs: Computer Networking Technology or Automation and Electrical Technology. For an associate's degree in welding, GRTS students would first complete the Industrial Welding course.

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