In the last week of September, the UPS Foundation awarded tool kits to automotive technology students from West-MEC, a career and technical education (CTE) school district, tool kits to help them start off in the automotive industry.
The ceremony took place on Sept. 28 with representatives from the UPS Foundation, the ASE Education Foundation and AZ Automobile Dealers Association. Eight individuals, some current students, and some alumni of West-MEC were awarded their kits at West-MEC’s Northeast campus with classmates and faculty present.
Adrianne Ofstedahl, the parent of Talon, a West-MEC alumnus was elated with the tools her son received.
“I was pleasantly surprised that West-MEC was doing something for him after he had finished the program, they have gone the extra mile,” she said.
Vice President of the ASE Education Foundation George Arrants said: “We not only accredit schools, we also create connections between education and the automotive industry. To help students coming into the registered apprenticeship program after West-MEC, the ASE Education Foundation applied for a UPS grant to provide starter toolkits.”
After being notified of the grant, Randy Golding and Nick Shumaker, automotive tech instructors at West-MEC, nominated both current and past students for the opportunity.
Arrants addressed the students, saying,
“Once you get your foundational education, you can go anywhere you want in the industry. Our industry is looking for bright young people such as yourself and we are willing to mentor you into our industry and help you grow and raise your families and have a successful career in the industry.”
Andy Mclean, the automotive fleet manager for UPS, representing the UPS Foundation said, “UPS and myself are honored to be a part of this program along with the ASE Education Foundation by giving starter kits for students. We help you get your foot in the door by getting the tools needed to get the job done. And get it done safely.”
While talking about the future students can expect in the automotive industry, Mclean said, “There is an absolute shortage of qualified technicians in the industry not just for UPS but for everybody. Anyone I know, no matter what company they work for, if they’re in my industry, it is hard to find people. We need to encourage these young folks to get into the industry and fill those job positions.”
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