Hormel Invests in Workforce through NICC

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Progressive Processing, LLC, of Dubuque, a subsidiary of Hormel Foods, understands that collaboration with Northeast Iowa Community College (NICC) will help to cultivate their own employees’ talent. Investing in employees and working with the College to deliver the education and training they need illustrates how an educonomy approach to professional development produces shared success for businesses and their workforce.

Austin Bussan and Shawn Hanen

Austin Bussan and Shawn Hanen

Hormel’s new Maintenance Training Program brought two maintenance mechanics, Austin Bussan and Shawn Hanen, to the NICC Peosta campus in January 2015. With tuition and fees fully covered by their employer, Bussan and Hanen are completing nine credits each semester as they work toward an Associate of Arts (AA) degree and begin their career pathway certificate Mechatronics Specialist program in June.

“What I really like about going back to school is that I get a degree behind my name for something I’m doing for a living,” Bussan explained. “A degree at NICC is a building block for a future engineering career or more education later. Now I will have that opportunity.”

“Hormel set up the training program for its employees, and NICC is the logical choice. The school is local and just a 20-minute drive from work,” Hanen added. “We both plan to enroll in the Mechatronics program this summer. We like to fix things, and the program is a good fit because we’re mechanically inclined.”

Professional mechatronics work involves automation in industrial environments, including maintenance work on robotics, sensors, pneumatics and hydraulics, electrical systems and mechanical gears.

After completing the Mechatronics certificate and a degree program through NICC in 2016, Bussan and Hanen will qualify for promotions to higher-paying industrial mechanic positions at Progressive Processing.

Many businesses in northeast Iowa take advantage of cost-effective, local education and training opportunities through NICC. Learn how your company can grow at www.nicc.edu/trainingandoutreach!

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