BLOOMINGDALE — A local business is “CREW”– Participate in Jefferson County Joint Vocational School’s Automotive Service Technology program in ventures that prove to be win-wins for both groups.
Last fall, TEAM Automotive Group of Steubenville implemented the Toyota Technical Education College Support program, which allows AST students to complete online modules for general maintenance certification and a workforce benefit. work. Juniors Jerome Coniker and Elijah Foster completed the course and were employed while eight other students were enrolled in the program.
Ryan Westling, director of fixed operations, said the company partnered with JVS and students who completed TECS were hired as full-time workers. They received TEAM apparel and $100 gift cards for their participation from company representatives and Westling said the goal of the collaboration is to provide marketable employees to meet a growing need in the industry. ‘industry.
“We are a big supporter of JVS,” he added, saying there was a shortage of work. “They can make an incredible living and there is a major need for technicians.”
Coniker and Foster, who completed the online program in 10 days, said they were grateful for the experience with TEAM as well as their JVS training.
“It’s good,” Coniker said. “(AST Instructor Ron) Reasoner also has a lot of knowledge that he has shared and is really helping me open up opportunities and build relationships.”
“I like it,” Foster added, saying the skills he learned at JVS definitely prepared him. “(It helped me) learn to do all the tasks I do at work. I never would have known all of this without being here.
TEAM also donated a V-6 powertrain engine and cutaway AC compressor to help train students to familiarize themselves with some of the more modern components.
Rob Velte, Technical Field Specialist and Toyota Motor Sales USA representative, said engines are purchased from various locations and donated to schools and for in-house training with dealer technicians, but this was a first for the JVS. . AST students will have the opportunity to learn how to repair the engine so they can do the same when working in the real world.
“This will be used for student training next year and for years to come,” he added.
Reasoner said the Toyota program and the motor donation will give his students a chance to prepare for the field.
“It’s a training platform that gives them the opportunity to put concepts into practice. It is very important to have the equipment when they train on specific components,” Reasoner added. “(Having the motor) is a great opportunity for students. It helps teach them the latest and greatest technology and we will definitely be using it next year. »
The local dealership has seven JVS graduates employed full-time at local facilities in addition to three current students and officials are inviting other students and their families to take a behind-the-scenes tour of operations to determine if it is a future one. career option.