Roland Machinery Co., the Komatsu distributor, congratulated four technicians who recently received their associates degrees from Komatsu America’s Advanced Career Training (ACT) program at Oklahoma State University in Okmulgee, Okla.
During the two-year program, Joseph Loeffler, Bryan Dahm, Karl Kleiman and Daniel Krupa split their time between classroom learning in Oklahoma and paid training on the job at Roland’s branch locations. Roland Machinery now holds the record for the most graduates sponsored by a distributor in the same class for the Komatsu ACT program.
“This training program teaches all the basics and focuses on the new machines in particular,” said Mike Bond, training manager of Roland Machinery. “The new graduates have been thoroughly trained on the latest electronics systems. They often end up teaching the older mechanics new information.”
Once a student is accepted into the program, Roland and Komatsu provide scholarships that comprise approximately three-quarters of the tuition cost. As interns, the students are paid an hourly wage while they learn on the job.
“Their wages usually cover the balance of the tuition and their living expenses while they are in school,” added Bond. “We like to help as much as possible. We’ll contribute for travel expenses and books, too.”
The technicians usually hear about the training program via “word of mouth.”
“We have pamphlets about it on all of our parts counters. Two have relatives who told them about the program. It’s a great opportunity for someone who’s interested in machines and is looking for a rewarding career,” Bond said.
The four new graduates have been assigned to Roland Machinery locations in four states. Three are field technicians — Joseph Loeffler in Franksville, Wis., Bryan Dahm in Marengo, Ill., and Karl Kleiman in Escanaba, Mich. Daniel Krupa is a shop technician at the Portage, Ind., branch.
Roland Machinery Co. has been selling and servicing heavy machinery since 1958. As the Komatsu dealer in the Midwest, the company has 15 locations throughout the area, in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri and Wisconsin. Roland Machinery also carries equipment from ESCO, Hensley, Metso, Tiger, Universal, Valmet, Vogele, and Wirtgen.