Bill Chupp of Chupp Implement has been participating in the Third-Graders Go To Work program since 1997. This year, he hosted Ann Phillips’ third grade class from Locust Grove.
Each year, he has the students begin by filling out job applications. When the class arrived at the farm implement store just north of Wal-Mart, they split up into groups to visit the sales, parts, office, service and shop facilities.
“As the students were visiting the employee’s stations, I spent some time reading their job applications,” Chupp said. “They described themselves and what position they were applying for in my workforce. Truck drivers outnumbered the other positions by far.”
Each student, past and present, got a hands-on approach to the business. Chupp gave them a tour of the equipment displayed on the lot.
“I stopped and explained the uses for each machine,” he said. “They climbed up into the cab of a large tractor, honking the horn and feeling the comforts of the seat, instrument console and spring suspension.”
The kids got to see how parts are looked up on the computer and also got a demonstration on making a contract for an equipment purchase.
“Each one ‘purchased’ something and received a printout of payments to be made,” Chupp said.
The students enjoyed pizza for lunch in the service bay area.
“Since their visit, I have taken the time to read all the applications and wrote a note to each one about the need for good employees in the future,” he said, adding that he encouraged the students to “come see me when you graduate.”
Chupp received thank you letters from each student after their visit.
“I like all of your tractors, and when you let us in the tractor that was cool,” Jayden wrote. “I learned how to sell tractors for the right price, and you have to be careful around equipment. Your are awesome.”
Katelyn wrote, “I liked that we ate pizza and got inside the tractors. I learned how to make a bow tie out of paper. It was a great day!”
“Mr. Chupp is so nice and Mr. Chupp tells great stories,” Rylea wrote. “I learned tractors can flip and injure someone really bad.”
Lane wrote, “I liked the pizza, tractors, tour and I learned more farm.”
“They are a great bunch of kids and I expect to see them again as they become involved in 4-H, FFA and sports,” Chupp said.