Heavy equipment program gains experience on airport project

Tue Oct 9, 2018 at 02:11 PM

Right on isn’t just an expression from the 70’s, “right on” means the North Arkansas College heavy equipment program students performed their work so well, professional engineers and architects were pleased with the work and cited zero issues.

Instructor Chad Hathaway says the recent project to expand the parking lot at the Boone County Airport took about two months and presented students with a variety of challenges. “This jobsite was different from others, as it was paid for by a government grant. An engineer and architect designed the job. The students got a taste of what it’s really like to have to maneuver around pedestrians and the public. Not to mention the grade changes for the drainage issues was a challenge. The students who were involved should be proud of themselves. This was a job for professionals and they handled it as such.”

Boone County Road Department loaned equipment including front-end loader, 6-way blade dozer and roller, and the airport let students use their skid-steer. 

“Northark does not own any of these machines, so it gave the students a chance to operate them,” Hathaway noted.

Eight-to-10 students performed 120 hours each on the project over two months, moving approximately 80 cubic yards of topsoil while setting the subgrade with compacted recycled asphalt, and adjusting the site for drainage and the laying of asphalt.

Hathaway smiled, saying spring break and bad weather presented additional obstacles during the project. “We overcame the challenges,” he said. The asphalt company reported the students work was “right on!”

North Arkansas College is committed to providing an educational and work environment for its students, faculty, and staff that is free from sexual discrimination including sexual harassment, sexual assault, and sexual violence. No form of sexual discrimination will be tolerated. See the full North Arkansas College Title IX Policy and Procedures for the specific definitions of sexual harassment and sexual violence, including examples of such conduct.