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Clinton Tractor places its trust in
Herkimer BOCES heavy equipment students

Dec. 8, 2016



Heavy Equipment Operation students wearing jackets from Clinton Tractor
Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES heavy equipment operation instructor Tom Browka, teaching assistant Terri Buckley and Clinton Tractor & Implement Co. President John Calidonna pose with juniors in the heavy equipment program after they received jackets donated by Clinton Tractor on Wednesday, Dec. 7, at Herkimer BOCES.



HERKIMER – Sometimes, a jacket means more than a way to stay warm.

Clinton Tractor & Implement Co. President John Calidonna recently presented Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES heavy equipment operation students with jackets in a continuation of support from the company for the Herkimer BOCES program.

Herkimer BOCES heavy equipment operation instructor Tom Browka told students that when they’re wearing the jackets, they’re representing Herkimer BOCES, the heavy equipment program and Clinton Tractor, so they have a responsibility to set the right example.

“It’s like he’s sponsoring us, which is totally cool,” Browka said. “You guys have earned this. You’ve stepped up to the plate. If you’re wearing this jacket in your home school, I want you to walk with your head held high, and I want you to walk proud.”

Calidonna and Browka gave the jackets to heavy equipment juniors during a presentation on Wednesday, Dec. 7, at Herkimer BOCES. Seniors received their jackets earlier the same day. Last year, Clinton Tractor gave jackets to just seniors, but Calidonna and Browka wanted to award juniors this year as well.

The Herkimer BOCES heavy equipment program launched last school year, when the natural resource management program was split into the heavy equipment program and conservation program.

Students in the program have the opportunity to operate heavy equipment such as bulldozers, backhoes, tractors, front-end loaders, excavators, forklifts, dump trucks and hand and power tools, while studying the use of the equipment and learning safety standards.

Clinton Tractor has helped the program in various ways such as providing forklift certification training and testing last year to students in heavy equipment and other programs. There are plans to do that again this year.

Calidonna said he believes supporting the heavy equipment program is important.

“This is our youth,” he said. “That’s what we’re here for. This is our future, our company’s future.”

Additionally, from a company perspective, supporting the students helps build brand loyalty with them from a young age, he said.

Calidonna trusts the Herkimer BOCES students to do the right thing while operating the machinery and representing Clinton Tractor by wearing the jackets because Browka trusts them, he said.

The gesture was not lost on the juniors, who discussed Calidonna’s donation of the jackets with Browka after the presentation.

“It was really generous,” Dolgeville student Edgar Jodway said.

Other students talked about the belief that Calidonna showed in them.

“He’s got a lot of trust in us,” Little Falls student Matt Walrath said.

Central Valley student Mackenzie Canter added to that.

“He sees our potential,” Canter said.

The mutual trust and friendship Browka and Calidonna have developed over years of business dealings is an example for students about how to work with other people and businesses, Browka said to the juniors.

“It’s a working relationship. We understand and trust each other,” Browka said. “If you’re honest with people, people trust you and have a really good relationship with you.”




Calidonna and Browka speak to heavy equipment students
Clinton Tractor & Implement Co. President John Calidonna (left) and Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES heavy equipment operation instructor Tom Browka (right) talk to juniors in the heavy equipment program before presenting them with jackets donated by Clinton Tractor on Wednesday, Dec. 7, at Herkimer BOCES.


Browka speaks to heavy equipment students
Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES heavy equipment operation instructor Tom Browka speaks to juniors in the heavy equipment program after Clinton Tractor & Implement Co. President John Calidonna presented them with jackets donated by Clinton Tractor on Wednesday, Dec. 7, at Herkimer BOCES.


Additional photos:

Browka and Calidonna shake hands with a student and give him a jacket


Calidonna and Browka talk to heavy equipment students


Heavy equipment students in Clinton Tractor jackets





 
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