Waco Plumbing and Pipefitting Technology program Heavy Equipment Rodeo

(WACO, Texas) – There weren’t any cowboy hats at this rodeo.

Texas State Technical College’s Plumbing and Pipefitting Technology program hosted the Heavy Equipment Rodeo from Wednesday, March 27, to Friday, March 29, in Waco. About 20 Belton High School students also participated in the event.

“I think the event exceeded expectations,” said Tony Montoya, an instructor in TSTC’s Plumbing and Pipefitting Technology program. “It was really nice with the amount of equipment we had on hand. I am very happy the students were able to break the mental barrier of using the equipment.”

The high school and college students learned about safety, inspections and troubleshooting. Students spent time driving a backhoe, trencher and other equipment.

“It’s good they get the hands-on experience,” said Michael Carrillo, a Belton High School construction careers teacher. “You can’t get that out of a textbook.”

Tate Stroud, a TSTC Plumbing and Pipefitting Technology student from Corsicana, said he enjoyed his work leveling out dirt and learning about the hydraulic hoses and other parts that heavy equipment have. He said he also enjoyed interacting with the high school students.

“It’s been great teaching the generation below us,” Stroud said. “You are helping those that will be there when you retire.”

Misael Cuevas, a Belton High School senior, said the mini excavator was his favorite heavy equipment at the event.

“I just wanted to come out and get more experience,” he said. “There is more (heavy duty equipment) than there were here last year.”

Heavy equipment was donated for the event by Central Texas Plumbing Solutions in Waco, Rabroker Air Conditioning and Plumbing in Hewitt, Shelton Plumbing in Woodway, and United Rentals in Waco.

Gib Reynolds, president of Central Texas Plumbing Solutions, said knowing how to safely operate heavy equipment is a good skill to have going into the plumbing field.

“I think it’s valuable and that it shows a student putting their energy into it,” he said.

This is the second year the plumbing program has held the event.

For more information on TSTC, go to tstc.edu.


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