The AED Foundation Announces New and Re-Accreditations for Dakota County Technical College

by Sara Smith | May 16, 2018
The AED Foundation is pleased to announce two important milestones achieved this week by Dakota County Technical College (DCTC).

Schaumburg, Illinois—The AED Foundation is pleased to announce two important milestones achieved this week by Dakota County Technical College (DCTC). A recognition ceremony, attended by local dealers and AED’s Great Lakes Regional Manager, was held May 8 at DCTC to honor the students and faculty for achieving AED Foundation Re-Accreditation of the Heavy Construction Equipment Technology A.A.S. degree program and AED Accreditation of the John Deere Construction & Forestry program.

The programs are led by Heavy Construction Equipment Technology Instructors Joel Fogarty and Jeff Borchardt.

“I’d like to thank The AED Foundation and our local equipment dealers for their tremendous support of our programs,” said Fogarty. “It’s a great partnership which allows us to provide hands-on training for the diesel equipment technicians of the future. And congrats to our Heavy Duty Construction folks. Our first and second year students were on hand to receive news of the AED Re-Accreditation for our general A.A.S. degree program.”

“In addition, our John Deere Construction & Forestry program was AED Accredited for the first time. Thank you to our hard-working faculty and inspiring students—and thank you to our partners at Ziegler CAT, RDO Equipment Co. and RMS for making this possible,” Fogarty added.

“AED is pleased DCTC has chosen to demonstrate its commitment to academic excellence and continuous improvement through the process of accreditation,” wrote AED President and CEO Brian P. McGuire. “These accreditations signify to equipment industry stakeholders that your college has met rigorous industry-specific national construction equipment technical standards. It further signifies to current and prospective students that your programs provide the best in diesel-equipment technical education as defined by the industry it serves.”

For local dealers, supporting a technical college or high school program involves time, resources, and financial commitments. However, the result of having a well-qualified pool of graduating entry-level technicians each year more than justifies those commitments.

“It’s great that DCTC is proactively working to address the technician shortage the construction equipment industry is facing and is working with local dealers and The AED Foundation to get results,” said Pete Anderson, director of safety and technician development for Road Machinery & Supplies Co., who attended the ceremony. “The technician shortage is not going away, so it’s critical that we continue to work together to address this issue.”

Mobile Heavy Equipment Mechanics


This career pays above the statewide median wage of $19.62.


Median: $27.13/hour
High: $30.51/hour

Seven-county Minneapolis/St. Paul metro

Median: $28.44/hour
High: $32.79/hour


This career is currently in high demand.

Future Demand

This career is high growth compared to other careers. There will be a need for about 1,160 new Mobile Heavy Equipment Mechanics to meet market demand between 2014–2024. This includes the demand due to replacement (workers leaving the occupation or retiring) as well as growth.

CareerWISE Minnesota

HCET AED Re-Accreditation recognition ceremony gallery

More about the HCET program…

Coursework in the Heavy Construction Equipment Technology program prepares you to succeed as a well-trained, mechanically minded, hard-working technician with heavy equipment dealers and contractors. Instruction involves classroom theory and live demonstrations in modern, well-equipped shops as well as hands-on repair of heavy equipment currently used in the industry. Making repairs on actual equipment is vital to skill development.

Heavy equipment dealers and earth-moving contractors are top employers. Jobs are also available with mining and logging companies. Most mechanics work in indoor shops, but experienced field service technicians travel to job sites to perform repairs.

Visit Heavy Construction Equipment Technology to learn more.
To learn more about the Heavy Construction Equipment Technology (HCET) program at DCTC, contact:

Joel Fogarty
HCET Faculty

To learn more about Associated Equipment Distributors (AED), contact:

Scott McPherson
AED Great Lakes Regional Manager