ASE Challenges Students and Parents to Rethink Overlooking Technician Careers

 “…unlike many high-tech careers that require four, six, or even eight years of college, automotive technology careers can begin after just two years of education. As with any career, lifelong learning and continuing education is necessary, but the simple fact is, students in automotive technology can get out into the real world sooner – and with less college debt.”

Jobs in automotive technology bring together two qualities that can be very difficult to find in a career; they are high-tech and accessible. Read more of Don’t Overlook Automotive Technology as a High-Tech Career Path, published by National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), to discover how automotive technology provides a world of opportunity to pursue high-tech, stable career paths.

No Venture Too Big In Snap-on’s Dedication to Future Technicians

Snap-on has a very specific vision in their backing of TechForce Foundation and our mission to encourage and support students pursuing post-secondary technical education and careers in the transportation industry. Opting to target donations toward Strong Start grants over traditional tuition scholarships shows a focus on the personal well-being of the techs themselves. Strong Start grants aid students in relocation, an often necessary and pricy step in pursuing Advanced Training programs. These grants may cover moving costs and first thirty days startup expenses such as utilities, security deposits, and first month’s rent and food. The cash grants supported by Snap-on provide an all-encompassing, unwavering support system for the budding technician, and show a true commitment to the bright future of the industry as a whole.

In addition to their backing of Strong Start grants, Snap-on has also earmarked money to be used in support of the FutureTech Successsm campaign. This campaign, set to launch in May 2017, is TechForce Foundation’s surge to fuel the future pipeline of transportation technicians. Snap-on’s partnership with TechForce in fueling this campaign will help us reach out to young individuals interested in pursuing technical careers, aiding students in discovering an exciting future and providing the industry with much-needed talent. Snap-on recognizes the massive shortage of skilled technicians necessary to keep up with the fast-growing and technologically innovative transportation industry, and is taking steps to help remedy the deficit.

Snap-on has also very generously donated tools to TechForce for fundraising purposes. Anyone who has ever been in charge of a fundraising auction before knows just how important it is to have the highest quality, most well regarded items available on the block in order to meet a monetary goal. The largest single supplier of the tools utilized in nearly every aspect of the transportation industry donating their very best for our auction gave us a massive leg up in meeting our goals. We greatly appreciate the generosity displayed by Snap-on in support of TechForce and student technicians everywhere.

TechForce not only enjoys the support of Snap-on through their donations, it is also honored to have Greg Rintala on its Board of Directors. In addition to his position on the TechForce Foundation board, Mr. Rintala serves on the boards of SkillsUSA, ACTE, and I-CAR. His commitment to bettering both technicians and the industry as a whole has led him to work with a variety of organizations, encouraging a sense of unity in purpose. Each organization has unique strengths and goals, and Mr. Rintala sees this as an opportunity for such organizations to work together to help technicians more effectively and in a larger variety of ways.

TechForce and Snap-on look forward to the many ways their synergy will assist future techs in achieving their education and career goals.


TechForce Foundation is an independent, 501(c)(3) nonprofit that encourages and supports students pursuing post-secondary technical education and careers in the transportation industry. The Foundation distributes more than $1.5 million in scholarships and grants annually, thanks to its generous corporate sponsors and donors. For more information visit

www. techforce.org

Snap-on is a $2.5 billion, S&P 500 company headquartered in Kenosha, Wisconsin, offering products and services that are available around the world. Snap-on Industrial has one goal: to enhance productivity with products, services, and capabilities for Aerospace, Education, Energy and Natural Resources, Military, Defense & Government, Maintenance, and Manufacturing and Assembly.

General Motors Supports STEM Education In Pursuit of Global Prosperity

General Motors has shown strong support for TechForce Foundation and our mission to encourage and support students pursuing post-secondary technical education and careers in the transportation industry. Their very generous grant of $140,000 will be poured into three exciting projects: the FutureTech Success SM campaign, tuition scholarships for the UTI Avondale GM Advanced Training program, and a pilot after-school program with the Arizona Science Center.

General Motors places a huge emphasis on its support of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) programs in seeking to foster economic growth and sustainability among communities worldwide. However, STEM does not just apply to IT or engineering, as many might think, it applies to many other functions within the transportation industry as well. General Motors has recognized this as an opportunity to combine its mission to better communities worldwide with TechForce’s mission to support the technicians of tomorrow.

The transportation industry is growing at an exponential rate, and the need for skilled workers is in high demand. This provides a very promising future for those pursuing careers in the field. “If we can help individuals who are motivated to pursue this kind of challenge discover the industry and get excited about the vast opportunities it holds, we are one step closer to creating the smart, safe, and sustainable communities General Motors has long been dedicated to building,” explains Dan Hancock, retired General Motors Vice President and current President of TechForce Foundation’s Board of Directors.

In working together to achieve this goal, General Motors became one of eight Early Adopters supporting TechForce’s FutureTech Success campaign with a $50,000 donation.

This campaign, set to launch in May 2017, is TechForce Foundation’s surge to fuel the future pipeline of transportation technicians by giving individuals the tools to recognize and foster tactile intelligence, as well as get connected with the industry to discover what opportunities await them.

General Motors’ partnership with FutureTech Success shows its dedication to helping young people find good careers that they are passionate about, and that will provide them with a successful and fulfilling future. The transportation industry is a booming industry, saturated with technological advancements, which will be indispensable in constructing prosperous communities for future generations. General Motors has taken note of the very important role the transportation industry has the potential to play in its STEM-focused pursuit of global prosperity, and has shown incredible foresight in recognizing the future technicians FutureTech Success is purposed with cultivating as the backbone for such growth. General Motors’ support of FutureTech Success and its unwavering dedication to bettering the world through aiding technicians in achieving their dreams is both inspiring and greatly appreciated.

General Motors also donated an additional $40,000 to underwrite a pilot program with the Arizona Science Center as part of the FutureTech Success campaign. This after-school program will provide kids with the opportunity to experience tech in a hands-on, interactive way. “We believe that today’s youth constitute such an important aspect of General Motors’ mission to foster widespread economic growth and prosperity,” adds Hancock. “A program such as this one allows kids the chance to really experience and get excited about tech. An individual with high tactile intelligence, but less of an affinity for a ‘traditional classroom education,’ might get to experience the world of tech and fall in love with a career they didn’t even know existed.”

While General Motors has a specific interest in providing younger individuals with the education and skills vital to building brighter futures, they also make it a priority to come alongside current tech students. General Motors granted TechForce $50,000 dedicated to tuition scholarships for students pursing the GM Advanced Training program at Universal Technical Institute’s campus in Avondale, AZ.

From the very start of an individual’s love for working with their hands, to achieving the career and lifestyle they have always wanted, General Motors has committed to doing whatever it takes to help create widespread stability and prosperity. When today’s young people are supported and invested in, the future holds great things. General Motors and TechForce Foundation look forward to fostering such a future through supporting both current and future technicians as they pursue the education and careers of their dreams.

 


TechForce Foundation is an independent, 501(c)(3) nonprofit that encourages and supports students pursuing post-secondary technical education and careers in the transportation industry. The Foundation distributes more than $1.5 million in scholarships and grants annually, thanks to its generous corporate sponsors and donors. For more information visit

www. techforce.org

General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM, TSX: GMM) and its partners produce vehicles in 30 countries, and the company has leadership positions in the world’s largest and fastest-growing automotive markets. GM, its subsidiaries and joint venture entities sell vehicles under the Chevrolet, Cadillac, Baojun, Buick, GMC, Holden, Jiefang, Opel, Vauxhall and Wuling brands. More information on the company and its subsidiaries, including OnStar, a global leader in vehicle safety, security and information services, can be found at

http://www.gm.com

Growing Technician Shortage What’s the Plan?

Concerns about a growing technician shortage aren’t new, and the problem’s not going to fix itself. We surveyed several industry leaders to get their opinions and well-reasoned solutions.

You might want to pour yourself a cup of coffee. In fact, you may want to brew a pot and call home to say you’ll be coming in late tonight. We have to talk about how to solve a shop challenge that we’ve known was coming, and it’s a big one.

Reports cite estimates of more than 600,000 middle-skill jobs going unfilled across the nation and we look like we’re in this group. We’ve had dozens of applicants for our technician openings and most seem unqualified. The industry-endorsed NATEF (National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation) generates approximately 30,000 graduates each year, and even with a boost from private automotive tech training schools, we’re still in need of new solutions. How did we get here and, more importantly, what can we do?

It’s notable that a century ago, in 1917, the United States Congress established a milestone priority to support hands-on learning titled the Smith-Hughes National Vocational Education Act. While this major federal act was aimed mainly at supporting educating youth for farming and agriculture, it led to successive Congressional support for training our nation’s skilled workers through the 20th century. Yet today, few would question deep concerns about the state of our nation’s skilled workforce.

A century ago, 90% of our nation worked in careers to provide 100% of our food supply; today 10% of our population produces 100% of our food stock. Meanwhile, the U.S. has mostly consolidated around metropolitan settings away from farms and largely relies on vehicles and public transportation. “We say we have an issue. It’s not just an issue, it’s a crisis,” said Chris Hadfield, Director of the Minnesota State Transportation Center of Excellence. “For every two technicians retiring, we have only one new entry coming in.”

Education policymakers and national leaders largely report that what is called Career Technical Education (CTE) is undergoing a renaissance needed in today’s public education. Jarrod Nagurka, Advocacy and Public Affairs Manager at the Association for Career and Technical Education, noted that from “both an employer value and practical relevance to keep kids in school, CTE works. The average high school graduation rate for Career Technical Education concentrators in 2012 was 93%, compared to the national graduation rate of 80% for other students. So a career in technical education benefits students in a variety of ways.”

Well, if CTE is worthy and the nation values it, why have we slipped backwards with our workforce? And perhaps more importantly, what can we do to help solve this for our industry?

Fast forward to 2017 and our current national Perkins Fund under Congress is a distant relative of the Smith-Hughes act. While Europe and other regions of the globe have sustained or grown their skilled workforce education and apprenticeship programs, the U.S. has reduced funding and now faces an unprecedented dilemma.

The Perkins Act is the federal government’s largest investment in technical education, but annual funding reauthorization has remained flat for 25 years. Kimberly Green, Executive Director of the Washington, D.C.-based organization Advance CTE, told us, “Since the Perkins funding has remained at pretty much the same level since 1991, it actually represents a 45% reduction when we factor inflation-adjusted dollars.”

We can see that at the end of a long day of discussions about automotive service anywhere across the nation, we’re likely to agree that public education is facing limitations. And it doesn’t look like reinforcements are coming from public education soon enough. A substantial and largely untapped opportunity is for us to get involved in new ways in our local communities, and there are many schools and young people who need us to reach out to them today.

Bill Haas, owner of Haas Performance Consulting, said, “We’ve been talking about this crisis for a good 15 years to my recollection, but I think it’s taken 15 years to get some people’s attention.” He added, “This problem of not having people enter the industry used to be masked by having enough people move around from shop to shop, but in the industry technicians are no longer moving among shops like they used to.”

Meanwhile, so long as everyday motorists hold antiquated images and myths about our industry, they’re largely unaware of the advancements of today’s technicians. Tony Molla, Vice President of the Automotive Service Association (ASA), observed, “From the general public’s point of view, nobody has had any trouble getting their cars fixed. So it really hasn’t been seen as a problem. But two things have changed. One is that vehicle technology has become much more complicated over a very short period of time and many technicians have had trouble keeping up with it. The second challenge is that the vast majority of techs who are servicing vehicles in our country are Baby Boomers, and I think that the attrition factor is kicking in.” Molla said the emerging problem is essentially finding qualified people with the skills to do the high-end work.

Another aspect of attracting youth into our field is being able to retain them once they’ve joined us. Haas noted, “The really astute shop owners have figured it out. They’re thinking, If I have this qualified guy who has the skills and the knowledge, I’d better do everything in my power to make sure he has no reason to leave.

Haas said that today’s most astute shop owners have improved their technician benefits to now include retirement programs, health insurance, paid holidays and time off with vacations.


Original article published on Motor.com

Written by Steve Ford

Photo by Steve Ford

TechForce Foundation Unveils Microsite for FutureTech Success Initiative

TechForce is excited to announce the launch of its latest creation in the drive to fuel the future pipeline of transportation technicians, the FutureTech Success microsite.

 

FutureTech Success is a multi-faceted, industry-wide campaign purposed with building the future transportation technician workforce by repositioning the image of the profession, giving middle- and high-school students, parents and influencers the tools to recognize and foster tactile intelligence, and providing scholarships and grants to help students complete their technical education.

 

The FutureTech Success microsite is the embodiment of this mission. Here you’ll be able to find engaging and informational resources for every stage of exploration; from discovering one’s own natural tactile intelligence, to finding the programs and scholarships essential to fostering those talents. While some features on the site, such as downloadable tactile challenges, are still under construction, there is more than enough to get you started exploring the exciting opportunities available for your tactile learner in the transportation industry.

 

Here are just a few:

Is Your Child “Wired For Success?” Are they an audio, visual, or tactile learner? Find out by taking a Learning Styles Challenge. You can share their results to get connected with a community who thinks just like they do.

 

Test Drive A Career as a technician and learn about the opportunities that are a perfect fit for your child’s smarts. Hear stories from seasoned professionals, industry newcomers, and current tech students on why they chose to pursue the transportation industry.

 

Myth Busters are available for those who need to see facts and figures. Here you can find information on everything from pay and career growth opportunities, to job availability and how S.T.E.M. innovations will continue to propel this exciting field into the future.

 

Resources provide national databases where you can search for local programs that will help your tactile learner hone in their natural talents. You’ll find schools, scholarships, events, internships, and so much more for FutureTechs in all stages of education.

 

This is only a sample of the array of features available for you and your FutureTech to explore on the FutureTech Success microsite. With this one-stop-shop hub, both you and your tactile learner will be able to discover their talents and the exciting future that awaits them in the innovative world of transportation tech.

 

Click on the link below to explore more of the FutureTech Success microsite.

http://futuretechsuccess.org/

Auto Care Association and TechForce Foundation Partner in FutureTech Success Campaign

The Auto Care Association has partnered with TechForce Foundation in its new national initiative, FutureTech Success, in an effort to fuel the pipeline of tomorrow’s workforce of technicians. As part of the Auto Care Association’s Job and Career Development program, the association will offer support to the initiative to deliver the message that being a transportation technician is a successful, in-demand and valued career path.

“Future technicians in the auto care industry have to be well-trained, dynamic in their thinking and passionate about the cars of today and tomorrow,” said Bill Hanvey, president and CEO, Auto Care Association. “We are proud to team up with TechForce Foundation and FutureTech SuccessSM to identify and encourage a better perception of the technician profession.”

FutureTech SuccessSM seeks to reposition the outdated “grease monkey” stereotype and bring back after-school and summer activities where young people can experience vehicle technology and how it relates to science, engineering, math and careers.

The initiative will focus on parents and influencers of 13-18-year-olds, and will provide hands-on opportunities for young men and women to experience the rewards of working and creating with their hands. The Auto Care Association and TechForce Foundation will work together to deliver a unified public message around transportation technician career opportunities and best practices.

“We aim to provide tactile-minded individuals and their parents and influencers with the resources and opportunities to discover the transportation industry as both a viable and exciting career option,” said Jennifer Maher, CEO, TechForce Foundation.

About TechForce Foundation
TechForce Foundation is an independent, 501(c)(3) nonprofit that encourages and supports students pursuing post-secondary technical education and careers in the transportation industry. The Foundation distributes more than $1.5 million in scholarships and grants annually, thanks to its generous corporate sponsors and donors. For more information visit www.techforce.org.

About the Auto Care Association
Based in Bethesda, Md., the Auto Care Association has nearly 3,000 member companies that represent some 150,000 independent automotive businesses that manufacture, distribute and sell motor vehicle parts, accessories, tools, equipment, materials and supplies, and perform vehicle service and repair. Visit www.autocare.org.


Original article published by Auto Care Association

https://www.autocare.org/BlogDetail.aspx?id=3532&blogid=86&gmssopc=1

For more information, contact Katy McQuiston at katy.mcquiston@autocare.org.

UTI Supports TechForce Expansion to Reach More Students In Need

Universal Technical Institute, Inc. (UTI) has been a faithful friend to TechForce Foundation (formerly known as the Universal Technical Institute Foundation) since the very beginning more than ten years ago, consistently providing support through donations and aid to ensure TechForce’s mission (to champion students to and through their technical education and into careers as professional technicians in the transportation industry) remains a reality. Not only has UTI persisted as a reliable and passionate ally in raising up the next generation of technicians, it has also served as a springboard for the expansion of the Foundation, playing an integral role in empowering TechForce to partner with a diversity of corporations, institutions, and associations.

UTI has led the pack consistently since 2007 as the Foundation’s largest single donor, donating over $1 million to TechForce in 2016. UTI also supports TechForce and its mission through its annual employee-giving campaign, Care2Share. Care2Share invites employers, employees, and customers to support the technicians of tomorrow through donations to its Life Happens Emergency Relief fund that helps students stay in school when a sudden financial emergency strikes. This year alone, UTI employees contributed $55,000 to aiding tech students in achieving the education and careers of their dreams. In addition to its monetary support, UTI provides donated office space for TechForce, allowing funds to be freed up and used for impacting the lives of student techs.

UTI’s commitment to bettering the lives of future technicians has endured through much change and growth as TechForce rebranded from UTI Foundation to TechForce Foundation last year, and continues to expand both its circle of donors and partners, and its mission.

The Foundation has been gearing up to launch its FutureTech SuccessSM campaign, purposed with driving the pipeline of future technicians through informing and inspiring young people and their parents and influencers, and connecting them with the expansive range opportunities available in the world of automotive tech. “To be effective in this endeavour, the Foundation needs to be unbiased, a sort of Switzerland among corporate donors, constantly clear that our shared mission is to inspire, support, and connect students to education and careers in the transportation industry,” notes Kim McWaters, Chairman and CEO of UTI.

UTI has signed on as one of seven major early sponsors of this initiative, in addition to supporting scholarships and grants for current students facing financial hardships. As TechForce seeks to build new connections with partners and sponsors to support the expansion of its mission, the Foundation can rest assured knowing it has a stable groundwork built on its relationships with longstanding partners like UTI.

“Change is hard, but it’s worth it,” further explains McWaters. “The struggle to recruit trained techs has risen to a critical level in every corner of the transportation services industry, and it will only get worse. Something needs to be done. An industry-wide effort is required, and the Foundation is the right leader for the job.”

Todd Armstrong, Vice President for National Partnerships at TechForce Foundation, recalls that John White, former CEO of UTI, was the first person to really urge TechForce’s Board of Directors to expand their thinking and focus heavily on bringing more technicians into the industry. “It would be good for UTI, it would be good for all the other automotive training schools or companies in the country, and ultimately good for the industry,” Armstrong explains of White’s vision for the Foundation’s expansion. “To put it another way: a rising tide lifts all boats.”

UTI recognizes this growth as a way to come alongside TechForce and impact the education, careers, and futures of exponentially more individuals. They truly care about both the individual technician and the future of the industry as a whole and, as such, have encouraged TechForce’s growth and new partnerships as a way to provide even more aid to tech students and fuel the highly-skilled workforce necessary to keep up with the rapidly expanding and incredibly advanced world of transportation tech.

“UTI has been such a great help to TechForce through its continued support during this transition. They helped create and foster the Foundation in the early days, and now that we are ready to spread our wings and function on a larger, more inclusive scale, they’ve committed to walking alongside us as we work to reach our full potential,” explains Jennifer Maher, CEO of TechForce Foundation. UTI’s enduring partnership through this transition has helped the Foundation as it expands and explores a variety of options that will allow both TechForce and UTI to better aid future technicians and ultimately revolutionize the industry.

As TechForce Foundation seeks to connect with every facet of the transportation industry, it recognizes the mighty role UTI has played in promoting the expansion of the Foundation’s mission. A bright future awaits both the field of transportation tech in its entirety and the techs in training today who will serve as the foundation for the rapid expansion and innovation propelling the industry forward. Together, UTI and TechForce seek to ensure that forward motion not only persists, but grows exponentially when fueled by the highly-skilled and passionate transportation techs in training today.

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TechForce Foundation is an independent, 501(c)(3) nonprofit that encourages and supports students pursuing post-secondary technical education and careers in the transportation industry. The Foundation distributes more than $1.5 million in scholarships and grants annually, thanks to its generous corporate sponsors and donors. For more information visit
www. techforce.org

Universal Technical Institute, Inc. is the leading provider of post-secondary education for students seeking careers as professional automotive, diesel, collision repair, motorcycle and marine technicians. UTI offers undergraduate degree and diploma programs at 12 campuses across the United States, as well as manufacturer-specific training programs at dedicated training centers through several well-known brands, including Universal Technical Institute (UTI), Motorcycle Mechanics Institute and Marine Mechanics Institute (MMI) and NASCAR Technical Institute (NASCAR Tech).

Shell Lubricants Featuring Pennzoil and Shell Rotella: A Friendly Face to the Student Tech in Need

Shell Lubricants, featuring Pennzoil and Shell Rotella, has been a true friend to the technician through their alliance with TechForce Foundation. TechForce Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit focused on encouraging and supporting students pursuing post-secondary technical education and careers in the transportation industry. We rely on generous associates, like Shell Lubricants, to aid us in championing future techs to and through their education.

Shell Lubricants, featuring Pennzoil and Shell Rotella, recognizes that the techs in training today will become the techs supporting and utilizing their products tomorrow, and seek to build that relationship from the get-go. This foresight and commitment to the future of the industry is admirable. Shell Lubricants’ personal interest in each individual future technician has led them to largely support Life Happens emergency grants. Fully aware that there are just some expenses you cannot put off until after schooling, Shell Lubricants has committed to keeping techs in school no matter what life throws their way. This aid is delivered in the form of on-campus food pantries, as well as on-the-spot emergency relief grants including gas and prepaid cards. Providing students with the help needed to overcome unforeseen circumstances that could potentially derail their education shows Shell Lubricants’ sincere care for the students themselves, as well as a pledge to preserve the bright future of the industry.

In addition to supporting students dealing with emergency costs, Shell Lubricants has also helped fund Pedal to the Metal scholarships, helping students financially in their pursuit of advanced training. Advanced training programs are manufacturer-specific programs that allow students to hone in their skills in a target field. As a lubricant company, Shell Lubricants does not have an advanced training program dedicated to their brand; this allows students receiving financial help through Pedal to the Metal scholarships funded by Shell Lubricants to pursue whichever advanced track they wish to. This demonstrates yet another way Shell Lubricants is committed to bettering each and every tech on their individual journey to achieve their dreams.

Shell Lubricants’ support of TechForce Foundation and our mission does not stop there, though. They have also provided great help to the Foundation itself through lending their marketing expertise and branding managers to help us get started. Their commitment to and relationship with the Foundation in order to bring about the shared goal of supporting technicians in achieving their dreams has been steadfast throughout. This very generous aid helped kick-start the Foundation in enacting our purpose, and for this we are deeply grateful.

TechForce Foundation and Shell Lubricants, featuring Pennzoil and Shell Rotella, look forward to this continued alliance in enabling student techs to overcome the curveballs life may throw their way on the road to achieving the education and careers of their dreams.

###

TechForce Foundation is an independent, 501(c)(3) nonprofit that encourages and supports students pursuing post-secondary technical education and careers in the transportation industry. The Foundation distributes more than $1.5 million in scholarships and grants annually, thanks to its generous corporate sponsors and donors. For more information visit
www. techforce.org

About Shell Lubricants
The term ‘Shell Lubricants’ collectively refers to the companies of Royal Dutch Shell plc that are engaged in the lubricants business. Shell Lubricants companies lead the lubricants industry, supplying more than 12 percent of global lubricants volume.* The companies manufacture and blend products for use in consumer, heavy industrial and commercial transport applications. The Shell Lubricants portfolio of top-quality brands includes Pennzoil®, Quaker State®, FormulaShell®, Shell TELLUS®, Shell RIMULA®, Shell ROTELLA® T, Shell SPIRAX® and Jiffy Lube®. http://www.shell.com

*Kline & Company, “Global Lubricants Industry November 2016: Market Analysis and Assessment.

TechForce Teams Up With Arizona Science Center to Create a New Kind of Challenge

TechForce Foundation has partnered with the Arizona Science Center to dream up the CREATE U: TechForce Foundation Transportation Challenge. The world of automotive transportation tech isn’t just junkyards, gears, and grease anymore. The industry is made up of a multitude of shiny, new parts that are constantly in motion. There’s never a dull moment, and this pilot program aims to prove just that.

The CREATE U: TechForce Foundation Transportation Challenge will bring together the resources, experiences, and missions from TechForce and the Arizona Science Center to provide young people with all the necessary tools to apply STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) skills to real-life scenarios related to the exciting and innovative world of transportation tech. This isn’t just tinkering around in an old garage, this is high-tech, cutting edge innovation.

The Arizona Science Center’s CREATE space combines art, innovation, community, and productivity into one spot where people of all ages can come together to create using cutting edge tools and technology (see what the CREATE space looks like by viewing this video). The CREATE space has been used for numerous CREATE Challenges designed to make learning a hands-on, fun experience, but TechForce and the Arizona Science Center are teaming up to construct a whole new kind of challenge.

This challenge seeks to ignite the passion for transportation tech in individuals who are hands-on, tactile learners and problem solvers with an interest in the industry. Projects will be tailored toward individuals who are mechanically minded, always tinkering with things or tearing things apart and putting them back together, and who may not enjoy traditional schooling or simply can’t sit still in class. If that sounds like you, you are exactly the candidate this challenge was made for.

“We are so excited to help get young people involved with the world of transportation tech in a very hands-on way, because these are individuals who learn by doing,” explains Jennifer Maher, CEO of TechForce Foundation. What makes the transportation industry the perfect fit for tactile-learners is its dynamic, active environment. TechForce and the Arizona Science Center want to open these students’ eyes to an exciting future and connect them with the careers they might not even know are perfect for them.

The Transportation Challenge program is currently under development by a national committee of automotive curriculum designers sponsored by ATMC (Automotive Training Managers Council). Two of these 12-week programs are slated to run over the 2017-18 school year. The first will take place this fall (September-December) and the second in the spring (January-April). Twenty 7th to 9th grade students from either Estrella Middle School or Trevor Browne High School will be selected to participate in each cycle. Teachers, counselors, parents, and students themselves are encouraged to nominate individuals they feel would both enjoy and thrive in a program such as the CREATE U: TechForce Foundation Transportation Challenge.

Applications for the fall cycle will be accepted through August 15th.

TechForce Foundation | Scholarships For Transportation Technicians

TechForce Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization with the mission to champion all students to and through their education and into careers as professional technicians. 

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