October 15, 2013

Freshmen students and staff from the diesel technology program at Northeastern are shown here with the JCB1440B backhoe which was recently donated to the program by a family from Breckenridge.

Freshmen students and staff from the diesel technology program at Northeastern are shown here with the JCB1440B backhoe which was recently donated to the program by a family from Breckenridge. The unit will be used as a teaching tool, allowing the students to rebuild what needs to be rebuilt and is especially helpful when learning about how hydraulics work. (Courtesy Photo)

The diesel technology program at Northeastern Junior College is once again the recipient of a generous gift in the way of an equipment donation. Lynne H. Amaral and her son, Scott Amaral of Breckenridge have donated a JCB 11400B backhoe to the program. The donation was delivered to Sterling on September 19th, amid the flooding conditions. The Amarals had also donated an excavator to West Coast Training, a vocational trade school for heavy construction equipment operator certification training out of Woodland, Washington. That school had sent a truck to Breckenridge to pick up the donation, and also agreed to deliver the backhoe to Sterling.  NJC diesel technology instructor JimmyAtencio and  Jason Hazlett, Director of Renewable Energy and Department Chair for Transportation and Wind Programs, were on hand to unload the donation.

According to Atencio, the backhoe is an awesome teaching tool. “We’ll work with the students to go entirely through this unit, rebuilding anything that needs rebuilt,” he explains, adding, “having the students go through the hydraulics on this backhoe will be especially good training for them.”  He said that once the students have restored the unit  back to tiptop condition, the program will likely offer it for sale and put the proceeds earned back into the program to help purchase new tools that will further enhance the training environment.  The value of this donation to the program is estimated to be right around $14,000.