Malloy Ford donated an automotive twin post lift to Charlottesville-Albemarle Technical Education Center’s (CATEC) Automotive Service Technology program in August. When Malloy Ford moved from its Pantops location to its new 2070 Seminole Trail space, it was an easy decision to donate to the Auto Service Tech program its retired lift. A CATEC Auto Service Tech Advisory Board member and Malloy Ford representative knew that the program’s current lift was not meeting the program’s needs and thought their lift would be a great addition to CATEC’s shop. Auto Service Tech Instructor Matt Richardson says the new lift will “bring real life experiences to students entering the automotive industry after graduation.”
Active in CATEC’s Auto Service Tech Advisory Board
Last year, Malloy Ford gave the Auto Service Tech program two complete engines on which students will practice their skills taking apart the engines. Malloy Ford is very active in CATEC’s Auto Service Tech Advisory Board, including participating in its interview events and hiring current and recent program graduates. In September, Malloy Ford hired current Auto Service Tech second year student, Alex Wiesniewski, to work in its service shop. CATEC’s Auto Service Technology classes use Ford’s Automotive Career Exploration program to educate students to service Ford vehicles. This web-based program gives students the opportunity to study a similar curriculum currently taught to dealership technicians. Ford has recognized CATEC as a school that has a 95% program participation rate.
The Auto Service Tech program boasts a robust enrollment, with students earning 25 dual-enrollment college credits from J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College. Students earn college credits for curriculum including automotive systems, climate control, electricity, and engine repair, and braking systems. Students also earn up to 10 Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) industry credentials. ASE industry testing is specially designed to evaluate and certify students who are studying in the automotive service industry. The ASE Education Foundation, in partnership with career and technical education advocate SkillsUSA, developed the exams to help students access professional credentials. They are a first step for students interested in building a career as an automotive service professional because they earn their first industry-recognized certifications before graduating from high school. These credentials make CATEC Auto Service Tech students marketable to local shops both during and after graduation.
A Newly-Accredited Program
CATEC’s Auto Service Tech program just completed its five-year National Automotive Technician Education Foundation (NATEF) accreditation. NATEF’s accreditation process is designed to evaluate the automotive service program’s structure, processes, resources, materials, and mission. Successful programs are built on collaboration between the instructor, industry experts, students, and community support. CATEC’s Auto Service Tech Advisory Board, which Malloy Ford has been a strong supporter of, encourages our program and bridges the gap between real world industry needs and classroom curriculum. On average, Virginia boasts a higher annual income for automotive service technicians than the national average with a projected 11% job growth.