Ben Zelazoski — Alumni Stories — Foundation & Alumni | Northcentral Technical College
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NTC Foundation

Alumnus Ben Zelazoski

Co-Owner, Zelazoski Wood Products, Inc.

When Ben Zelazoski of Antigo was deciding which college to attend in 1968, his criteria were simple: He wanted a good education. He needed it to be affordable. And he didn’t want it to take four years. “I chose NTC because it offered a solid educational background, was geared for those who wanted to get out in the workforce, and was much cheaper than a four-year college,” Zelazoski explained.

Zelazoski attended NTC’s Wausau campus and graduated in 1970 with an associate’s degree in accounting, which he said prepared him well for his professional career. “NTC taught the best practices of accounting and gave me a good overview of cost accounting, inventory control, payroll—everything,” he said. “It gave me a strong foundation so I could adapt to the procedures of any employer.”

Zelazoski put that knowledge to work at Zelazoski Wood Products, Inc., the family business. He implemented formal accounting procedures, such as preparing monthly statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statements to better track costs and income. These new efficiencies were invaluable as the company grew and expanded.

Today, Zelazoski is co-owner of the business, which is an important part of the area's wood manufacturing industry. To help ensure that there will be enough skilled workers to meet the future needs of the industry, the Zelazoskis have offered the use of their facility for class space during the construction of NTC’s Regional Wood Technology Center of Excellence. Their generosity is making it possible for classes to begin in the fall of 2009. The center is slated for completion at NTC's Antigo campus in 2010.

For Zelazoski, getting an education wasn’t the only life-changing benefit of attending NTC. While there he met his wife, Carrie, who was pursuing an associate’s degree in secretarial science. The couple has been married for 37 years, and have three children and three grandchildren.

When not crunching numbers, Zelazoski enjoys downhill skiing, relaxing in the woods, singing in the church choir, and golfing.


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