Monday, December 19, 2022

Schuylkill Technology Center Launches New Adult Evening Automotive Technology Program


Many local people may remember the days when Schuylkill Technology Center (STC), then called the “Vo-Tech” had almost as many adult students as secondary high school students. 

Those days might not be a thing of the past, if STC Administration has anything to say about it. For the past three years, STC has been slowly expanding adult education programs and their newest program, Automotive Technology, is scheduled to launch January 3, 2023.

“A 610- hour, adult, evening Automotive Technology program that will teach students the fundamentals of vehicle repair and prepare them to earn the PA State Inspection License will launch this winter,” said Director Shannon Brennan. The program, which will be co-taught by Automotive Technology Instructor, Steve Homola and Diesel Technology Instructor, Tom Buff will include the following courses: Introduction to Automotive Technology, Engines, Electrical Systems, Engine Performance, Transmissions & Transaxles, Suspension & Steering Systems, Brakes, and Passenger Comfort Systems. At the end of the program, students will sit for the PA State Inspection License. “STC has been teaching Automotive Technology to high school students and offering vehicle state inspection classes to adult students for many years; it only makes sense to combine the two,” said Homola. It also provides an opportunity for greater use of the impressive CTE Laboratory Equipment; below, Steve Homola checks the Hunter Wheel Aligner that will be utilized in the new program.

The Automotive Technology Program was approved by the PA Department of Education, Bureau of Career and Technical Education and participants who qualify are eligible for Title IV Financial Aid. Classes in this program will run Tuesday and Thursday evenings through December 21, 2023 and include an online instructional component for the theory part of the program. “Every employer is currently having trouble finding skilled trades-people to fill vacant positions, so I fully support STC expanding adult program offerings,” said Michelle Vesay, CEO of Joe’s Used Auto Parts and STC Occupational Advisory Board Member.

According to Director of CTE, Shannon Brennan, STC also intends to launch Medical Assisting and a Massage Therapy Programs in the Summer of 2023 as well as an HVAC Program the following year. STC already offers the following adult education programs: Commercial Driver's License (CDL) taught day and evening, Heavy Equipment Operation, Practical Nursing, and Welding. The next cohort of part-time Practical Nursing students will start classes in January 2023.

In addition, STC recently began offering inter-generational corporate training courses in Electro-Mechanical Technology. Local companies send employees to STC one-day per week over a 12-week period of time where they learn side-by-side with our high school students in a combination of hands-on and virtual learning using the Amatrol curriculum. The next class starts January 21, 2023, and will include motor controls, electrical wiring, electric power distribution, motor trouble shooting, mechanical drives, electric sensors, and electronic timers.

Interested students may contact Melissa Frie at 570- 874-1412 for more information or visit www.stcenters.org.

Pictured: STC Automotive Instructor demonstrates the use of a Hunter Wheel Aligner in preparation for the launch of a new adult, evening Automotive Technology Program at the North Campus in Frackville.

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