May 27 2014
Homework assignments in college rarely result in delicious food, but that’s what happened during the 2013/14 spring semester at Seward County Community College/Area Technical School.
It all started with Director of Food Service Jerry Odle’s dream.
Odle wanted a smoker. A spacious one, with room for brisket, burgers and more.
“I gave a very rough drawing and an idea to Steve Merz,” the instructor of Drafting and Design Technology, Odle recalled. Hours of research and practice, combined with a heartfelt desire for tasty smoked meats expressed by SCCC/ATS director of food service Jerry Odle, resulted in a smoker beyond all his hopes.
“I cannot thank all of the people involved in this project enough for bringing a dream to life for me,” Odle said. “There is an amazing amount of talent in our Technical School Instructors and it shows in their students with the pride they put into finishing a project.”
After Odle brought him a first sketch, Merz worked with a student to create a three-dimensional design for the smoker. Next, Welding Technology Instructor Roy Hamey took the printed designs, “and he and his class went to work,” said Odle.
With nothing more than a reclaimed Anadarko tank, printed designs and a dream to work with, they built a cooker from the ground up that Odle is sure will last many years.
Finally, Auto Body Collision Repair Instructor Bree Downs took on the challenge of painting an object that would have to withstand high temperatures for long periods of time.
Once the cooker was finished, Odle wasted no time: he used his new culinary weapon to prepare food for a college function the very next week.