Subscribe | E-Editions | Free E-editions | River News 75¢ | Super Shopper - FREE | About Us | Contact Us | FREE Classified – Items Under $50
The Northwoods River News | Rhinelander, Wisconsin

Flanders Realty Group

home : news : city news
October 6, 2022

Nicolet College graduate Pierre Page, center, receives a hearty congratulatory handshake from Nicolet’s Jeff Labs, dean of Trade and Industry/Apprenticeships, during the recent commencement ceremony at Nicolet. Presenting diplomas, far left, is Wisconsin Department of Corrections Deputy Secretary Jared Hoy with Nicolet President Kate Ferrel at the podium. (Submitted photo)
Nicolet College graduate Pierre Page, center, receives a hearty congratulatory handshake from Nicolet’s Jeff Labs, dean of Trade and Industry/Apprenticeships, during the recent commencement ceremony at Nicolet. Presenting diplomas, far left, is Wisconsin Department of Corrections Deputy Secretary Jared Hoy with Nicolet President Kate Ferrel at the podium. (Submitted photo)
8/12/2022 5:28:00 AM
Nicolet College holds graduation ceremony for McNaughton Correctional Center students

Ten men from the McNaughton Correctional Center can now call themselves Nicolet College graduates after a recent commencement ceremony at the college. Each of the graduates completed the Heavy Equipment Operator certificate program at Nicolet, the college announced this week.

In providing student reflections during the ceremony, graduate Pierre Page said he was second-guessing himself when he first signed up for the program. He had been out of school for 20 years and was seriously wondering if he had what it took to complete his studies.

"I knew it was going to be challenging but it turned out that that was exactly what I needed at this point in my life," Page said. "I had had very few skills coming into this but now I have something to build on. The good part about this is I can continue to build on my education when I get home. All it takes is a little spark to turn into something big."

Nicolet College President Kate Ferrel praised the graduates for their determination to become college graduates.

"Earning a college credential is a valuable accomplishment and one that each graduate will proudly carry with them for the rest of their lives," Ferrel said. "They've demonstrated through hard work and dedication that they have earned this distinction. The skills graduates possess are exactly what they need to enter the workforce and enjoy successful careers or to continue their education and learn even more skills."

The 10 students completed the seven-week program to give students entry-level skills required in running, maintaining and servicing heavy equipment used in construction, road work, logging, and other related industries.

Funded by grants from the Wisconsin Department of Corrections (DOC), the graduates completed classes in Gas Metal Arc Welding and Thermal Cutting, Hydraulic Components and Basic Electrical Circuits, along with customized skills training in earth moving and grading, site safety and equipment operation. Students were able to take advantage of hands-on equipment training and operation onsite with the McCoy Group, a local equipment dealer.

In addition, students completed OSHA 10 training, First Aid/CPR, and PIT Powered Industrial Truck (PIT) certifications.

Wisconsin Department of Corrections Deputy Secretary Jared Hoy praised the graduates for the commitment they demonstrated to learn the skills to build a brighter future for themselves and their families.

"DOC and Nicolet College, we provided the opportunity. We opened the door, but we cannot do the work. That was up to the men we are honoring here today. Today's graduates knew it would be hard work, but they still took that opportunity and what they have done with it is inspiring."

Heavy Equipment Operator graduates can expect to earn anywhere from $16.50 to $27 an hour on entry-level jobs, with the potential of $36 an hour or more with experience.

Department of Workforce Development Secretary-designee Amy Pechacek also had high praise for the graduates.

"We are celebrating the accomplishments of these men as they prepare for their eventual return to communities across Wisconsin, and we are raising awareness of an underutilized and highly motivated talent pool to fill Wisconsin employers' needs for skilled workers," said Pechacek.

"At the Department of Workforce Development, we are proud to work in partnership with the region's workforce development board, the Department of Corrections, and Nicolet College to prepare Wisconsin workers for in-demand jobs in heavy equipment operation offering family-supporting wages. We also are pleased that the local workforce board is investing part of its Worker Advancement Initiative grant funding to maximize the impact of this training program and support successful outcomes for the graduates."

Several speakers at the event also extended a special thank you to Toni Van Doren, Nicolet's Innovation Center manager, who led the effort to coordinate the numerous pieces and partners to make the program a success.

This is Nicolet's fourth graduating class from the McNaughton Correctional Center. Earlier graduates earned Nicolet College credentials in Welding and Mechanical Maintenance.





Article Comment Submission Form
Please feel free to submit your comments.

Article comments are not posted immediately to the Web site. Each submission must be approved by the Web site editor, and meet the comment guidelines (see "Comment Guidelines" at right). There may be a delay of 24-48 hours for any submission while the web site editor reviews and approves it.

Note: All information on this form is required. Your telephone number and email address is for our use only, and will not be attached to your comment.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Required
Last Name:
Required
Telephone:
Required
Email:
Required
Comment:
Required
Passcode:
Required
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.
   


Advanced Search
search sponsored by



Subscription Login
LOGIN | SUBSCRIBE

Order photo reprints

Classifieds
Advertising Information

Community Connections
Submit to Newspaper...

Ced Vig's books for sale
Kris Gilbertson's 'I Recall...'

Twitter









Life
Facebook | All Things | Wisconsin Lottery | The Lakeland Times - affiliate | Winter Road Conditions | Snow/Trail Conditions


The Northwoods River News | Walker Communications, LLC
232 S. Courtney Street, Rhinelander, WI 54501 | Office (715) 365-6397 | Fax (715) 365-6361

Corporate billing office: The Lakeland Times / Lakeland Printing Inc. | P.O. Box 790, Minocqua, WI 54548 | (715) 356-5236 | Fax (715) 358-2121
Members of the Wisconsin Newspaper Association, Wisconsin Community Papers, Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce, Minocqua Area Chamber of Commerce

Site Design and Content | Copyright 2022 1up!

Software © 1998-2022 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved