Trane Employees Earn Western Degree at Workplace | Western Technical College


Trane Employees Earn Western Degree at Workplace

Employees working together

LA CROSSE, Wis., Jan. 10, 2017 – Thirteen Trane employees recently completed a Supervisory Management associate’s degree onsite at Trane through a unique partnership with Western Technical College’s Business and Industry Services.

The students took classes online as well as in-person at Trane and used policies, procedures, and projects that were directly applicable to their workplace. This was dually beneficial for Trane and the students as it provided the skills and competencies needed to be effective supervisors. 

“The program teaches the latest skills and builds the leadership competencies required in today’s business environment,” said Richard Karcher, director of Human Resources at Trane. “We create a competitive advantage when we invest in our people and create opportunities for them to learn modern leadership and technical skills. These skills will help maintain a strong manufacturing presence in the Coulee Region. Western is a critical part of this equation and result.”     

“This represents a true partnership between a local company, dedicated to improving the skills of their supervisors, and Western Technical College,” said Patti Balacek, Dean of Workforce and Economic Development at Western. “The instructors were able to customize the materials and projects utilized in the class to meet the exact needs of Trane, while still ensuring that the students learned all of the required competencies in the degree program.”

Classes met once a week for three hours after the regular work day. The students finished the final course in December, completing 24 credits in eight weeks, and will participate in the spring 2017 commencement ceremony with all other Western degree students.

“These students put their heart and soul into learning and growing through this experience, which for many, has led to their first post-secondary degree,” said Balacek. “We are proud to be a part of their accomplishments.”

For more information about Western’s Business and Industry Services call 608-789-6290 or email