• Go Beavers!!!

Williams hired as new Ag Power instructor

06 August 2018

Pratt Community College’s Agriculture Power Technology program welcomes the experience and leadership of new instructor, Ralph Williams.

Williams was hired late in the 2018 spring semester and will begin teaching this fall. He received his diesel mechanic training at PCC before being hired onto Mid-Co Implement. He was able to work in the John Deere profession for over 30 years before coming back to PCC to teach what he loves.

Before becoming a diesel mechanic, Williams had a different career path in mind.

“When I came here out of high school, I had a couple of career choices,” said Williams. “I thought I wanted to farm and that never panned out for me. I dabbled with it but it has not paid our living. I had an interest in broadcasting and PCC had a broadcasting program at the time, so I studied that.”

After two semesters of studying broadcasting, Williams was hired at a local radio station where he spent three years being a DJ.

“It was the most fun job I had in a lot of ways,” said Williams. “You get to sit in the air conditioning and talk. But, in a small market, it doesn’t pay well.”

After he and his wife decided to get married, Williams decided to change careers to the other field he studied at PCC, diesel mechanics.

“Dwane DeWeese was my diesel instructor,” said Williams. “I was fortunate to have him as an instructor and later on, as a friend and a customer in my career.”

Williams had developed a passion for teaching by working with interns from schools such as PCC.

“I would work one on one with them basically,” said Williams. “Some of those experiences made me interested in trying to help better prepare them for the industry.”

Twenty years ago, Williams attempted to become an instructor but unfortunately, was unsuccessful.

“They revamped the program 20 years ago,” said Williams. “I was one of the industry people invited in to spend two days here. It was intense. I spent two days here with 10 or 12 others in the industry. There were mechanics, salesmen, and a service manager or two. We helped develop the program as how it is today. I thought it might be alright to instruct then. I applied and interviewed, but I didn’t get it. I was probably too young at that point.”

When Williams saw the teaching position was available again, he did not hesitate to apply.

“This opportunity came available again and I was needing to do something different so I applied and got lucky this time,” said Williams.

Williams said his goal for his students to get them well prepared for all aspects of the industry, including in fields such as customer relations, electronics, hydraulics, and more. He is looking forward to teaching engines most.

“Engines is what got me into this,” said Williams. “I love diesel engines. I grew up around a couple of old wore out 930 Case engines. The rattling, the smoke and the nasty smelly old diesel – I just love it!”

Along with teaching engines, Williams is excited to teach students in the facility PCC has grown over the years.
“I’ve been in and out of the PCC shop over the years,” said Williams. “I taught tractor safety out here once a year for a while, but I hadn’t really been in it to see what was here. This is state of the art. I am looking forward to interacting with the students and building on to what we already have here.”

When Williams is not teaching or working on diesel engines, Williams enjoys farming, camping, and hunting.
Pratt Community College offers the Agriculture Power Technology program on-campus. Interested students can contact the Associate Director of Special Program Admissions, 620-450-2114, elyseb@prattcc.edu. For more information about the Agriculture Power Technology program, contact Ralph Williams at ralphw@prattcc.edu.