John Pfisterer (R), president of Komatsu Equipment Corporation, chats with Rick Clasby, executive director of the Utah Trucking Association, during the recent event, held at Cummins Rocky Mountain in Salt Lake City. Komatsu Equipment is an industry partne
Gov. Gary R. Herbert, along with Utah Diesel Technician industry partners and the Governor's Office of Economic Development (GOED), announced the Utah Diesel Technician Pathways program, which is designed to provide Utah students a direct pathway from high school and college to the workforce.
Herbert announced the program during a press conference at the Cummins Rocky Mountain facility in Salt Lake City. An initiative similar to the Utah Aerospace Pathways (UAP) program, the diesel technician industry is creating a pathway that will open opportunities for young men and women who are interested in the diesel technician field.
“Productive education partnerships, such as the Utah Diesel Technician Pathways program, are important investments in the state's future,” Herbert said. “We are fortunate to have unique partnerships with industry and education leaders to better align workforce education with economic opportunities in Utah.”
The program begins in high school with the completion of select classes. Upon graduation, students will complete an internship with one of the diesel technician industry partners and then at least one year of training at Salt Lake Community College (SLCC). This program has brought diesel technician industry representatives, education leaders and government together in collaboration.
The six diesel technician industry partners in Utah participating in this program are Cummins Rocky Mountain, Jackson Group Peterbilt, Kenworth Sales Company, Komatsu Equipment Corporation, Mountain West Truck Center Volvo Mack and Wheeler CAT.
The collaboration started in Oct. 2015 with the goal of having the pilot program beginning in the 2016 school year. Canyons and Jordan School Districts, who already offer diesel technician coursework, are working with the industry partners to fully align the curriculum offered in their programs. Students from those classes will be able to complete their internship after high school graduation and then, with additional training at SLCC, possible work with one of the industry partners.
The industry partners will be providing the school districts with the most up-to-date technology for their students to train on. They also will provide the students an opportunity to interview for employment.
“We are excited about the opportunity to work with these school districts to strengthen our workforce in the diesel technician industry,” said Kyle Treadway, president of Kenworth Sales Company. “Working with education will prove to be an asset to the industry community as we get to interact with the students who are interested in this career path.”
The program's launch has been made possible through the dedication and commitment of several organizations throughout Utah. Partnerships like these continue to produce proactive solutions for the state's workforce development.