Agriculture has undergone tremendous change.  Today’s farmer can accomplish in hours what to long ago might have taken a week!  Innovation in equipment and other technologies have enabled farmers to leverage their land and labor resources, producing more with less.  Lack of labor has forced farmers to do what had traditionally been done with manual labor with equipment (technology), without equipment and technology farmers simply couldn’t keep up!

As the industry evolves, agricultural equipment technicians will play an ever more important role in the vitality and health of the agricultural economy.  The future of agriculture depends on equipment and the people who can keep it running!

Pre-Apprenticeships Geared to Students

Both our pre and full apprenticeship programs are built on the same competency lists and use the same validation test(s). Because both programs are competency based a candidate can move at their own pace.  What matters is, have candidate/students mastered the skills necessary to do the job.

Pre-apprenticeship is simply levels one and two of the full apprenticeship program and is intended to allow students the opportunity to explore a career as an Agricultural Service Technician, access to educational and support programming, work experience opportunities while providing additional flexibility for candidates (students and adult learners), teachers and dealers. All credit/competencies mastered while registered as a preapprenticeship can be credited/carried over to the full apprenticeship program.

We Are Here to Help!

As the program sponsor the Northeast Equipment Dealers Association (NEDA), in cooperation with the Pennsylvania Departments of Agriculture, Labor and Education and The Lancaster Workforce Development Board are committed to supporting both students and teachers with students enrolled in the agricultural equipment technician apprenticeship programs. Many of you are already teaching some of core skills/competencies or have access to other educational programming.  Regardless if you’ve identified a gap in your program of instruction or are looking to improve, NEDA, our dealers and industry partners are here to help!

Shadowing is an important Professional Development opportunity for Ag Educators, other Career and Technology Educators, and subject matter Educators to acquire a better understanding of equipment dealerships. This knowledge and practical experience serves as a benefit to the educators knowing that they can adapt their curriculum to better educate their students on the practical skills required to enter the agricultural workforce. Educators shadowing dealership technicians, will come to appreciate the science, engineering and innovation found in today’s agricultural equipment and the technicians/ dealership staff whose problem-solving skills are frequently put to the test, in real world solutions. In an effort to encourage shadowing opportunities for teachers, NEDA has developed documentation for use by teachers, administrators and dealers in support of those opportunities. Please click the link an print a copy for your use.

NEDA will:

  • Sponsor professional development programs based on “teacher” feedback (currently working on Electronics, Hydraulics and Diesel “teach the teacher” programs)
  • Help organize class visits to dealerships
  • Help organize internships/externships
  • Support Continuing professional development for teachers
  • Support Micro-credentialing opportunities within the Apprenticeships

As teachers you have a unique opportunity to help build life skills and competencies, expose your students to fulfilling and sustaining careers and industries they may not have otherwise considered. NEDA and our members want to help!

Digital Credentialing / Micro-Credentialing

Digital/Micro-Credentialing can be effective motivational tools for teachers and students.  In his September 18, 2019 article “What are Digital Credentials and What Do They Mean for Education?” Matthew Lynch (https://www.thetechedvocate.org/what-are-digital-credentials-and-what-do-they-mean-for-education/) talks about the benefits of digital credentials, their use and development and ability to tie skill development and validation to industry needs.

In response to teacher requests NEDA in cooperation with NOCTI and NOCTI Business systems has developed digital credentialing for based on the skills associated with our Ag Technician Apprenticeship and Pre-Apprenticeship programs,  Levels 2 through 4 include both written and performance (hands on) digital credentials.

Blueprints (skills validated) for the Digital Credentials are as follows:

Level 1      Level 2      Level 3      Level 4

Ag Educators Equipment and Technology Professional Development Program

Having developed and implemented an apprenticeship program with NEDA, the Ag Educators Equipment and Technology Professional Development program focuses on giving local secondary school-based agricultural educators a practical professional development experience that involves shadowing dealership technicians. Through this professional development opportunity, educators will gain insight into the modern day practices of equipment dealerships and subsequently will be better equipped to educate their students on the skills required to enter the agricultural workforce. Students will ultimately have a better understanding of the profession and its benefits, creating a pipeline leading to better technicians for dealerships in the future.

Questions? Need More information?

If you have questions or need more information about how to enroll your students in this exciting career opportunity, please contact us.