August 1, 2016
Read about Heinry Friessen's journey through Wylie's paid scholarship program
In June, Heinry Friessen was promoted to Service Manager at the Wylie Lamesa location after starting with Wylie as a shop helper in August 2010. Supported by a full scholarship from Wylie, Heinry attended the Oklahoma State University Institute of Technology (OSUIT) in Okmulgee, Oklahoma from the fall of 2010 until he graduated in August 2012. Schooling alternated between 8 weeks in Oklahoma, then 8 weeks in Lamesa. He graduated with an associate’s degree in applied science, with a focus on diesel and heavy equipment. Scot Wylie attended his graduation.
Wylie partners with the Western Equipment Dealers Association to provide a full scholarship for a 2-year program at OSUIT. “It’s a specialized, technical learning program,” said Jason Johnson, Wylie’s HR Director. This program allows for students to receive a degree in half the time of attending a 4-year university, and lands them in the job market quicker. This allows them to start having income and gaining experience faster. Jason said, “It seems less and less people are going into specialized programs and positions like this; it really is a high demand field. Getting a job after graduation just wouldn’t be an issue. The scholarship is open to women and men, and we hope to have more and more people gain interest in the program.”
Heinry’s father was a cotton farmer, so Heinry grew up helping him in the fields after school and during the summers. He drove his first tractor at 12 years old, helping his father plow the fields; so he’s no stranger to the farming community. He has two older brothers and two younger sisters. One of Heinry’s brothers works for Crop Production Services, and had brought in a red tractor to be worked on at the Lamesa shop. A former service manager spoke with Heinry’s brother about Wylie’s scholarship program at the Oklahoma State University Institute of Technology (OSUIT) in Okmulgee, Oklahoma. Heinry then spoke with David Vaughn, Wylie’s Corporate Services Manager, and made the decision to attend OSUIT upon graduating from Klondike ISD. Heinry said, “When I graduated high school, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do. Then my brother told me about the Wylie program, and I made a big and quick decision. But I’m glad I did.”
This August, Heinry has been with Wylie six years. He began working in the shop, then worked as a service technician. Heinry worked under three service managers before his recent promotion. Has anything changed? Heinry laughed, “I just have a lot more responsibility and paperwork to tend to."