Rapides Foundation grant adds Bulldozer Simulator for Forestry Technology Training

Winnfield, La., Oct. 15, 2020 — Thanks to a grant from The Rapides Foundation, Central
Louisiana Technical Community College (CLTCC) students in the Forestry Technology Program
can now learn the basics of operating a bulldozer on a state-of-the-art simulator.
The bulldozer simulator is the third heavy equipment simulator in the program, joining
simulators for an FM Log Loader and one for a Track Buncher/Feller.
“A bulldozer is a basic piece of equipment used in logging,” explained Forest Technology
Instructor Jordan Franks. “Our Advisory Board and our industrial partners feel it is important for
our students to have a working knowledge of bulldozer equipment. They are used to do Best
Management Practice (BMP) work, maintain roads and manage water runoff. They are a musthave item on site.”
Franks said the new simulator allows students to get a basic understanding of operation,
maintenance and safety. “This gives our students the ability to get familiar with the controls and
operation and train safely in a controlled environment to develop a basic understanding of
operation without worrying about damaging the machine or hurting themselves.”
The machine uses virtual reality, Franks said, noting it has three screens simulating the front,
back and side views as well as a helmet students wear for training exercises. The simulator
trains students on all basic tasks for operating the equipment, from initial safety checks to
proper use and then shutdown procedures.
“We are very fortunate to have the support to purchase a machine of this quality to give our
students the best possible training,” said Huey P. Long Campus Dean and CLTCC Director of
Adult Education Jeff Johnson.
In addition to forestry needs, Franks said the simulator gives the CLTCC Forestry Technology
students a leg up if they chose to move into a construction career. “It definitely gives our
students a leg up with construction,” Franks said. “There are not a lot of people with this kind of
experience.”
“CLTCC is thankful for The Rapides Foundation and its support of our advanced manufacturing
programs. These simulators immediately impact our current forest technology students while
also affording business and industry partners opportunities to grow their incumbent workforce
via targeted skill and customized training courses,” said Vice Chancellor of Workforce Solutions
Misty Slayter.
To enroll and register, visit www.CLTCC.edu/apply. For more information, contact the school via
email at info@cltcc.edu or call 800-278-9855.

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