Ridgewater College | Willmar, MN
Meat Cutting Program
Jeff Miller | Dean of Instruction
A product is created, made, crafted. And your select meats whether that is a good steak for grilling or venison brats from the deer you harvested are no different. At Ridgewater College’s Willmar Campus students will be taking to the meat lockers to learn this specialized skill in its new Meat Cutter Certificate Program.
“The interest in this program has been a phenomenon. It is unlike anything I have ever experienced my whole career working in academia,” said Dean of Instruction, Jeff Miller. “This is the closest that any of our programs come to having an apprenticeship,” he explained. The Meat Cutting program is a 4-week course that combines online lectures with on-site ‘labs’ or actual functioning meat market businesses. These select locations will be focused in southern Minnesota and students will learn the process right there. After graduation, they will walk right into gainful employment at that site.
“This program is really targeted to serving our smaller community meat markets and individuals who want to learn the skill themselves,” Miller said with confident enthusiasm. “It’s a one of a kind program that many places throughout the county are already asking to be part of.”
The model is perfect, local companies gain skilled employees, while students gain employment and we, the consumer, get a quality product that is giving back to our communities in more ways than one. The first class will begin this fall, so coming this winter, when you are picking up your next meal or taking that fall buck in to the butcher, go ahead and ask, “Do you have a Ridgewater Grad working here?” And soon enough, the answer will likely be “You bet.”
This full article was originally published in the Summer 2022 EDC Newsletter. Read the full article here
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