The market for electric vehicles has grown rapidly in recent years and is expected to continue to accelerate for the foreseeable future.
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SRP donates car to West-MEC
Students learn more about electric vehicles
(Salt River Project/submitted photo)
Randy Golding, Automotive Technology Instructor, West-MEC Northeast Campus receives the keys from Kate Kochenderfer, Salt River Project senior director of supply chain, transportation and flight services.
The market for electric vehicles has grown rapidly in recent years and is expected to continue to accelerate for the foreseeable future. With the opportunity for new careers in this growing industry, the Western Maricopa Education Center (West-MEC) is launching a new EV program available to students across 14 public school districts and two charter districts in the Valley.
A vital component of the new program is a 2015 fully electric Ford Focus donated today by Salt River Project. The EV was formerly a part of SRP’s extensive EV fleet and will allow West-MEC students a real-world opportunity to prepare for a modern-day EV automotive technician career.
"As technology changes and with many states mandating EV adoption by 2035, we recognized the need for an education program that would offer students an opportunity to develop skills working on modern-day automobiles," Randy Golding, West-MEC’s automotive technology instructor said. "Having an actual working EV provides students with a hands-on experience that will enhance their learning experience."
West-MEC is a public school district that provides innovative Career and Technical Education programs. According to Golding, the group has been working with a number of manufacturers and industry leaders to develop the two-year program and is currently constructing a new building for the students to work in.
"With an estimated three million electric vehicles on the road today in the U.S., there is a clear opportunity for a career in this growing industry," Kate Kochenderfer, SRP senior director of supply shain, transportation and flight services said. "More than ever, students need the opportunity to learn the skills necessary to be successful in an economy that is transitioning to low-carbon, electric vehicles."
The SRP EV will provide a valuable tool for students to have exposure to the inner workings of an EV where they can apply technical knowledge and skills to repair, service and maintain a fully electric vehicle.
"We are excited to support West-MEC in building needed curriculum for EV training and hopefully some of the students who graduate from this program will end up working for SRP’s Transportation Services department and help maintain our EV fleet," Kochenderfer said.