CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., Sept. 23, 2005 – Noranda Aluminum of New Madrid, Mo., has announced a new scholarship program in connection with Southeast Missouri State University that will provide renewable scholarships for Southeast students who are pursuing or interested in pursuing engineering technology and computer technology degrees.
Noranda will provide renewable scholarships for students attending Southeast pursuing a degree related to the field of maintenance (electronics and mechanics). Noranda will choose students for the electronic related field and students for the mechanical/industrial field for scholarships each year.
Dr. Randy Shaw, dean of the School of Polytechnic Studies and assistant provost of extended learning, said the $4,500 annual scholarships cover incidental, general and special course fees and books for students while attending Southeast. Recipients of the scholarship will have the opportunity to work for Noranda in the summer and during breaks and must agree to work at least four years at Noranda after they graduate from Southeast.
“On behalf of our industrial and engineering technology programs and the School of Polytechnic Studies, I would like to thank Noranda for the confidence they have shown in our programs to help meet their employment needs,” Shaw said. “We are extremely grateful to Noranda Aluminum for making these funds available so we can continue to educate students to be future members of the workforce in our region for many, many years to come.”
Noranda Aluminum – New Madrid Human Resources Director Tim Williams announced that Steve McPheeters, superintendent of communications and employee training and development will manage the scholarship program for Noranda. Noranda is launching the scholarship program in an effort to prepare a new generation of skilled craftsmen.
“There’s a great need for skilled high tech maintenance people,” he said. “We see a point in time where many of our workers are getting older, and there are not as many young ones coming in. We are trying to get the message out to students and their parents that this is a great opportunity to get a great education in a field that is needed, and a job comes with it. We’ve got to fill that gap.”
Scholarship finalists will be interviewed by a Noranda selection committee and complete a series of aptitude tests.
“If they have that aptitude in skilled crafts, they have lots of opportunities to work for a good company,” McPheeters said.
These scholarships could result in a large number of students on scholarship in Southeast’s Industrial and Engineering Technology programs each year, representing a substantial financial commitment from Noranda, as well as supplying a number of quality jobs in the region for the future.
“Southeast and Noranda hope to find the quality students to take advantage of this extraordinary opportunity,” McPheeters said.
The combined scholarships will result in annual commitments reaching the $100,000 a year commitment level.
“To get good, skilled craftsmen is an investment to us,” McPheeters said. “We think this is an excellent opportunity.”
Eligible students can enter the program two ways. They can complete an area vocational program at New Madrid or Sikeston in a related technical field and be admitted to Southeast to pursue a bachelor of science degree in engineering technology (electrical and control or manufacturing) or an associate of applied science degree in computer technology (automated manufacturing or microcomputer systems) or they can be currently enrolled and pursuing one of those degrees. Currently enrolled Southeast students must have completed at least 12 credit hours with a minimum 2.75 grade point average and at least six credit hours of technical coursework in their major.
Students must have an interest in becoming an electrician or mechanic when they graduate and enjoy working with electronics or mechanical items and equipment. Students also must pass an apprenticeship aptitude battery of tests and participate in Noranda’s paid internship program every summer before they graduate.
Students interested in applying should submit a one page letter of application explaining why they want the scholarship and why they want to work for Noranda when they graduate. The application should include two letters of recommendation, with one being from an instructor. Interested students should send their resume, transcripts, letters of recommendation and letter of application to: Steve McPheeters-Noranda Aluminum, Inc., P.O. Box 70, New Madrid, MO 63869.
Application deadline is Feb. 15. A panel of Noranda employees will make the final selections.