Timberline partners with Falcon High School on Career Pathways Email
Wednesday, November 09, 2016 03:30 AM

Dave Kranz, Falcon High School
The Irrigation 101 training provided by ALCC for high school teachers in January was a hit with Dave Kranz – a teacher at Falcon High School, Colorado Springs. Soon after loading up his Irrigation System in a Box from that training and driving back to the Springs, he was on the phone with Tim Emick, owner of Timberline Landscaping, Inc. Kranz was inspired to be the first Landscape Career Pathway school in his area, and he wanted to know how soon they could get together and talk shop.

“I just don’t want to do this – I want to do it the right way,” says Kranz. And that is why he contacted Timberline. During spring break, he got into a Timberline truck to see firsthand what the industry does. That included getting into the mud with Timberline’s John Butters to help repair a mainline.

Though his teaching background is in social studies and special education, Kranz is a good fit for teaching Career and Technical Education – an assignment his administrators had asked him to accept about 2 years ago. While in middle school, Kranz bought a lawn mower for five dollars and dragged it behind his bicycle to mow lawns in his Minnesota neighborhood.  Hands-on experience as an adult helped qualify him to be an Ag/Ed teacher, which is the big umbrella under which Career Pathways fits. He spent time on a ranch in Montana working cows and training colts. He still has a small business on the side feeding horses. He’s an aggie who also loves irrigation.

With his certifications now complete and with support from the school, Kranz talks excitedly about launching a curriculum that connects high school students with the landscape industry. His vision is to begin school year 2017-2018 with 15-20 students including boys and girls “who are taking classes because they are really interested and want to do this.” Students in the program will be able to do a work/study program during spring break and spend their last two months spring semester doing internships – mainly irrigation.

Timberline’s help as an industry advisor has been key. Says Kranz, “We have it worked out to be the first year-long high school offering landscaping, design and installation in the State of Colorado. There’s no way I could do this by myself. Timberline has offered design people and others to come in and help.”  

Read more in this issue of Colorado Green NOW:
Recruiting young people for the industry: what CSU’s Zach Johnson tells parents
The benefit of scholarships extends further than one student
Career pathways are nothing new for Pickens and FRCC grads
The journey to build a career pathway

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