Ike McVicker – High Plains Technology Center
Newlywed finds one-stop shop to support his growing family.
THEN: Newly married and working a part-time job with no idea what route to take for a career. After Ike McVicker graduated from Woodward High School in 2011 and got married, his mother-in-law mentioned to him that High Plains Technology Center had a wind program. He spoke to school representatives and loved what they had to say, so he enrolled. Through the program, he
- Learned all aspects of the wind industry from a high-level view down to the small details of how to troubleshoot and use basic tools.
- Became certified in several emergency rescue devices that are used in the wind industry as well as in Microsoft Excel.
- Learned how to build a resume and developed interview skills.
- Installed his own sprinkler system at his home using the skills he learned in electrical and hydraulic systems.
NOW: McVicker is the manager of two wind farms near Woodward. His responsibilities include maintaining the high voltage substation, the turbines themselves and everything in between. He is responsible for the wind farms meeting all of the performance metrics and being safe while doing so.
“A job in the wind industry is stable; it’s challenging but still fun,” he said. “By having that great, stable job you’re able to provide for your family, which is ultimately most people’s end goal, I think.
“High Plains was a one-stop shop for me. My goal was to get a job, but what I ended up getting is more than that. You get so many more skills, and you learn that getting a job or being qualified for a job is a lot more than you would think.”
McVicker says almost all the technicians at his locations have come from the High Plains wind program.
“We feel like there’s so much value in hiring people who have come through this program. They’re committed, they’re trained, and they’re ready to go,” he said.