SHS alumnus uses hands-on training from high school at Cummins

SHS alumnus uses hands-on training from high school on the jobsite at Cummins
Posted on 10/27/2017
Zach Higdon graduated from Scottsburg High School with college credits from Ivy Tech Community College and completed an electrical technology program.

The training and education he received while at SHS allowed him to move forward in his career at Cummins, where he is in an apprenticeship program.

“Because I already took those at Prosser, I didn’t have to take them at work,” Higdon said. “I recommend going to Prosser and getting some background to start.”

Scottsburg High School partners with Prosser Career Education Center to give students a hands-on, career-oriented education in a skilled trade. Students spend half of the day at Prosser taking classes pertaining to a specific skill program and the other half taking academic courses required for graduation.

After being hired just before his high school graduation, Higdon was able to take his training from high school to Cummins’ assembly line. He was hired full-time after four months. Higdon knew his path and where he wanted to go because of his experience in high school.

“I fell right into it,” Higdon said. “I did not want to go to college and not be making money.”

When the apprenticeship program offered at work, he applied in hopes to become an electrician. He was accepted into the apprenticeship program, and as a journeyman, he will spend 8,000 hours on the job learning the skills necessary to become an electrician. Higdon will help with the maintenance of the Cummins facility, making sure robots and other highly-technical machines continue to work.

“It keeps getting more automated,” Higdon said. “Tons of things could go wrong. You have to be good at troubleshooting.”

After two years in the apprenticeship program at Cummins, Higdon is halfway through. Higdon moves throughout the facility in many different trades, so he learns about each department.

“They want you to be well-rounded,” Higdon said.

Since becoming a journeyman, Higdon’s salary has more than tripled from his starting wage of $11 per hour, which he earned right after school on the assembly line.

Higdon chose the Path to Workforce. Enroll today to see how Scott 2 can be “Your Path to a Brighter Future.”  We’ve helped thousands of students find their path. We will help your students find theirs.