As part of its ongoing commitment to support training and workforce development, Advantage Truck Group is hosting the Diesel Equipment Technology competition for the 2022 SkillsUSA Massachusetts and SkillsUSA Vermont State Championships at its Shrewsbury, Mass., facility.
High school students from Vermont competed on April 28, and students from Massachusetts competed on April 29. The winner from each competition will represent their state at the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference diesel competition in June.
The annual SkillsUSA competitions help to encourage students with an interest in and aptitude for diesel technician-related work and highlight career opportunities in this field.
With its new report, the American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) has named the ongoing diesel technician shortage as one of the top issues facing the trucking industry. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates, there will be over 28,000 openings for diesel service technicians and mechanics each year for the next decade.
“The need for qualified diesel technicians creates strong job prospects for students and skills competitions like this help highlight these opportunities,” says ATG president and CEO Kevin Holmes. “ATG is proud to be able to provide this support for SkillsUSA, as we see this as a vital part of technical education in the region that will help build the next generation of skilled technicians."
This year’s state championships include the top qualifying students from high schools representing school districts across each state. During each event, students complete tasks that challenge their knowledge of tools, precision measurement, specific vehicle components and job interview skills, as they cycle through workstations. Stations include tasks related to engine diagnostics, electrical systems, brakes, tires, air systems and more.
The winner of the Massachusetts state championship will earn four hours of training with a Master Diesel Technician at ATG’s Shrewsbury facility to help prepare for the national competition. In addition to hosting this year’s Diesel Equipment Technology competitions, ATG manages the events and designs the hands-on tasks at each testing station.
ATG is the largest DTNA dealer in New England, offering truck sales, service and parts from locations in Raynham, Shrewsbury and Westfield, Mass.; Lebanon, Manchester and Seabrook, N.H; and Westminster, Vt.