Automotive department expands fleet through donations< More Stories
In December 2016, Lakeland received by donation a 2017 GMC Tracker from General Motors of Canada, and a Ford Escape and a Ford Focus hatchback - both 2015 models - from Ford Motor Company of Canada.
“Being able to gain more hands-on experience on newer vehicles definitely aids in our training, especially coming from a dealership,” says Thomas Stevenson, a second-year apprentice at Norris Ford Sales in Wainwright. Working at a dealership typically provides real-world experience on vehicles less than five years old; therefore having a newer inventory “is great because I can apply what I learned right away.”
The three new additions bring Lakeland’s new-vehicle inventory to five. About a year ago the automotive program received a 2015 Dodge Charger by donation and the department purchased a 2008 Toyota Prius for hybrid training.
Working on the Charger has also proven beneficial to Stevenson. While there are some similarities between automakers, being able to cross-train further enhances his training. The same thing can be said for Paige Skrypichayko, a second-year apprentice at Bonnyville Dodge.
“It’s great to see the differences and compare them,” says Skrypichayko, who had never worked on a newer Ford product. “It’s great to be able to get my hands dirty and see what’s different.”
The automotive department also has various older vehicles that are industry-relevant and serve as useful tools to complete objectives set out in the training guidelines.
“I sincerely thank both General Motors and Ford for supporting our automotive service technician program through their recent donations,” says Dave King, dean, trades and technology. “While it remains important for our students to have the knowledge and understanding of older automotive technology, their generosity will help in keeping our programs as current as possible.”
The new additions will also be used in the parts technician apprenticeship program as well as the career and technology studies (CTS) partnership with Buffalo Trail Public Schools, and St. Jerome’s Catholic School and Blessed Sacrament School of East Central Alberta Catholic Schools.
Photo: Paige Skrypichayko (left) and Thomas Stevenson, both second-year automotive service technician apprentices, are two of many students to get their hands on three recently donated vehicles to the School of Trades and Technology.