Gina Broeckelman, Director of the Beloit Area Chamber of Commerce, opened the Chamber Luncheon program, held at the NCK Technical College Student Union Conference Room, Thursday noon by saying she hadn't expected as large a crowd as was present but was very pleased that it had exceeded her expectations.
The Theme for the Luncheon was "The Power Of One." Broeckelman, introduced Eric Burks, President of he North Central Kansas Technical College who talked about how individuals can impact the success of an overall Organization." He told the audience "NCK Technical College is the best kept secret in the state" but he hopes to change that.
Before continuing his presentation Burks introduced the NCKTC kitchen staff that prepared the luncheon meal and thanked them for their work. Burks then introduced Caleb Amndson, the eighteen-year old heavy equipment student at NCKTC, who saved a man from drowning over Labor Day Weekend at Harlan County Lake in south-central Nebraska.
President Burks gave a power-point presentation and talked about the strong partnership between NCKTC and Fort Hays State University and how they are working together to take their partnership to an even higher level by adding more classes and options to their curriculum. Burks said the college guarantees one hundred percent student job placement after they finish their studies at the college and has only had to retrain one student since this started. He said the NCKTC staff members go the extra mile to assure that students get the best advantage the college has to offer. Another plus the college offers is the ability to transfer credits from the college to Fort Hays State.
Burks introduced Dr. Bob Severance and his wife Mary Ann. Severance was the first president of NCK Technical School and worked hard to help get it started. The college began in 1964 and will celebrate its 50 Year Anniversary in the fall of 2014. The Student Union where the luncheon was held was named after Severance and his first wife Dorcus. Severance is still very active in the affairs of the college.
President Burks introduced Dr. Edward Hammond, the President of Fort Hays State University, who has served as president for 27 years, which is longer than any other school president in the 110-year history of the college. Hammond is also the longest serving president of the Kansas Board of Regents.
Hammond told the audience they are presently on a Fort Hays State University Media Tour and will take part in 41 different events in 20 different cities in the State. Hammond said, "The Power of One is the result of hard work that creates an effective lasting change and this doesn't happen by accident. He gave an interesting power-point presentation showing that Fort Hays State University is the fastest growing University in the State of Kansas and is second among all of the other state colleges in the nation," President Hammond said.
Economists mislead families of students by leading them to believe the college they attend as an issue of capitol investment instead of a college that is affordable.
FHSU has grown by 25 percent over the last five years because they offer a high quality education at a reasonable cost. They now have 5,000 on-line students. They try to align their education to the needs of the students. At the present time they graduate 50 percent of their students attending the University.
"You can't escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today," Hammond said. "There is a tremendous need for educators in the future in Kansas." He named off a number of different professions that are going to be needed in the future to meet the needs of the rural areas of Kansas. Fort Hays State University is working hard to meet these needs, President Hammond said.
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