NORTHWEST COMMUNITY College has improved its ability to train heavy duty equipment operators thanks to a grant from a federal program.
The $573,380 grant has paid for 11 training simulators, a 32-foot trailer which houses six of the simulators and a truck which will tow the trailer to offer training where and when needed.
An event May 22 at the college attended by Lynn Yelich, the federal Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification, showcased the simulators, trailer and truck.
“This will truly ensure the companies have access to a loyal and highly-trained workforce,” said Yelich in speaking to a group of mostly college employees, students and board members.
She said the key is the ability to train people in the intricacies of heavy duty equipment operation in a low risk environment.
Student sit at a console mimicking a piece of heavy equipment and work their way through realistic scenarios displayed on a large TV screen in front of them. Some of the simulators have screens behind the student to provide a rear view of what is happening as well.
The animation is detailed enough so that it will show clods of dirt dropping off of a large shovel.