West Michigan International makes donation to tech education

In an effort to combat the trucking industry’s growing technician shortage, Navistar and its International dealer network recently collaborated to launch an integrated equipment donation program to supply accredited technical schools with training equipment, real-world advisory counsel and career opportunities.

Through this program, the University of Northwestern Ohio (UNOH) received a 2013 International 8600 Day Cab with a 13-liter engine and Allison transmission from Navistar and coordinated with West Michigan International/K&R Truck Sales.

West Michigan International/K&R Truck Sales signed up UNOH on the Service Essentials program with Navistar and that provides them with access to the Navistar training for their instructors and students and the NED, ServiceMaxx, NavKal, DLB and HerRo software for International trucks. With this donated piece of equipment, the dealership says UNOH can integrate this software and training into multiple classes. Specifically, the equipment will be used within the diesel technology program for students seeking diploma and associate degrees.

Courses that will use the training aid include Heavy Equipment and Vehicle Integrated Electronics, and Diesel Performance and Diagnosis focusing on after-treatment and engine fuel systems, the school says.

“Having a relationship with West Michigan International elevates our technician program,” says Dean of the College of Applied Technologies Bob Marshal. “Not only does their involvement enable our students to learn on relevant, late-model equipment, but also opens the doors to rewarding career opportunities.”

West Michigan International also is part of the Diesel Advisory Board that meets twice a year to review program goals and curriculum.  The board also discusses ways for members to support UNOH and its graduates. West Michigan International also attends UNOH Career Fairs throughout the year.

“The growing demand for quality heavy-duty technicians is no secret, so we are proud to support UNOH in building a successful program,” says Bill Smiewec, director of Warranty and Training. “Through our relationship we aim to act as a mentor to the school and students – assisting in creating plans and building a culture to engage, retain and empower the right talent.”

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