RACINE, Wis. — March 2 — Case IH, Service Motor Co. and Fox Valley Technical College (FVTC) announced a new long-term partnership to provide the college's Agriculture program with the latest agricultural equipment and precision farming technologies. "Our agreement supplies FVTC with a variety of new equipment every year for 10 years," says Kevin Sommer, vice president of Service Motor Company. "It means throughout the next decade, teachers will be educating students on the newest technologies available in the marketplace for agriculture.

"There's so much changing with agricultural machinery, and the technology can get outdated quickly," Sommer adds. "When FVTC graduates hit the job market, they'll have the advanced skills they need to stay ahead of the technology curve."

FVTC's Agriculture department offers an umbrella of comprehensive training programs and opportunities, including Agri-Business/Science Technology, Farm Operation, Outdoor Power Equipment, Agriculture Power Equipment, and Horticulture Technician. Case IH equipment will be used in classes for agriculture production, natural resources, landscaping, material handling and small engine repair. Maintenance and grounds-keeping employees at FVTC also will reap the benefits with state-of-the-art snow removal equipment.

New Case IH equipment for FVTC includes Case IH Magnum and Farmall tractors; an Early Riser planter; an Axial-Flow combine with chopping corn head; tillage implements; hay and forage equipment; mowers; skids steers; and Case IH Scout utility vehicles.

FVTC students reap the benefits

"The rich tradition of Fox Valley Technical College's Agriculture programs exists because of industry partners like Case IH and Service Motor Company," says Dr. Susan May, Fox Valley Technical College president. "Our students will experience firsthand the impact of this collaboration, especially during a time when our economy is facing many uncertainties. Tomorrow's agribusiness leaders will carve new directions in productivity and quality of life, thanks to the generosity and vision of our partners."

According to Tom Yost, FVTC Agriculture Power Equipment instructor, "Partnerships like the one with Case IH and Service Motor Company are an important part of the Agriculture program at FVTC. Without them, we wouldn't have the quality of equipment in the shop or in the field to train our students, who in turn, will become the next generation of agriculture equipment technicians.

"This partnership is a huge advantage for our students," Yost adds. "Look at how fast agriculture equipment technology changes. I teach a GPS class. When GPS technology first was being used by the farming industry, it helped steer the tractor across the field. Now GPS includes variable rate planting, so you can vary the seed population across the field depending on soil conditions and fertility. You can vary the rate of fertilizer applied, depending on soil types and soil fertility. Our students will use the latest precision farming technology, to get them focused and ready for what they're going to see in the industry."

Yost also points to the revolution in farm machinery during the last decade. "What used to be a good sized combine is now the smallest. We've seen amazing increases in tractor horsepower, along with the size of the equipment being towed behind the tractors," he continues. "The size of farms is increasing too. Dairy and grain farmers now have to cover more acreage in limited time. When the weather's good and Mother Nature cooperates, farmers have to get a lot done in a day. When our students graduate, they will have the knowledge and skills needed to take on any task, to work efficiently and effectively to keep all that equipment moving."

Access to Service Motor and Case IH experts

Sommer says a lot of Service Motor Company employees got their start at Fox Valley Technical College. As part of the partnership, instructors and students will have full access to Service Motor's employees and resources. "Our employees and Case IH product specialists will support classroom instruction, provide hands-on training and assist in field demonstrations. If you take our employees, we have over 1,100 years of combined experience. That's a valuable resource.

"It's fantastic to see Case IH, with their worldwide headquarters in Racine, Wis., emphasizing agricultural education in Wisconsin - taking care of their own, and training local students for the future," Sommer adds. "We'll all be growing together."

Jeff Schmaling, senior director of accounts management for Case IH, says the company is pleased to partner with FVTC and Service Motor Company. "Kevin Sommer attended Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton, and Service Motor Company has six locations around the college. They've been supporting agriculture in the Fox Valley since 1916. And the roots of Case IH in Wisconsin date back to 1842, when Jerome Increase Case established the Racine Threshing Machine Works. Now all three Wisconsin-based agricultural institutions are coming together to benefit today's students - and tomorrow's ag leaders."

Launched in 1950, the Agriculture program at Fox Valley Technical College was one of the first technical education training offerings of its kind in Wisconsin. Today, the program offers an umbrella of comprehensive training opportunities to enhance the marketability of its students, while addressing the needs of an ever-changing market.

Case IH is a global leader in agricultural equipment, committed to collaborating with its customers to develop the most powerful, productive, reliable equipment - for those who demand more. With headquarters in the United States, Case IH has a network of dealers and distributors that operates in over 160 countries. Case IH provides agricultural equipment systems, flexible financial service offerings and parts and service support for professional farmers and commercial operators through a dedicated network of professional dealers and distributors. Productivity enhancing products include tractors; combines and harvesters; hay and forage equipment; tillage tools; planting and seeding systems; sprayers and applicators; utility vehicles and site-specific farming tools. Case IH is a brand of CNH (NYSE: CNH), a majority-owned subsidiary of Fiat Group (FIA: MI).