WALKER -- The future endeavors for automotive students at the Livingston Parish Literacy and Technology Center (LPLTC) is coming into focus.
Actually, it’s coming in a Focus.
Robinson Brothers Ford will present a 2014 Ford Focus to automotive service technician (AST) students of the Literacy and Technology Center during a ceremony starting at 9 a.m. on Thursday, Dec. 5.
Chris Savage, general manager of Robinson Brothers Ford, and Bill Reitenour, service director, will present the vehicle to students and AST instructor Mike Deville. It will give the class a chance to gain hands-on experience.
The LPLTC automotive service technician program is receiving the donation because its students have performed among the nation’s best on the Ford Learning Management System (LMS) training modules.
Officials from the Ford Motor Company recently recognized the Literacy and Technology Center as among the nation’s top five schools that utilize its Automotive Career Exploration (ACE) program.
ACE is a partnership program between Ford Motor Company, Ford and Lincoln dealerships, and secondary and post-secondary educational institutions, according to its website. It raises awareness and increases interest in career opportunities within the automotive industry, specifically as a service technician.
Students attending a Ford ACE partnership school obtain knowledge of Ford/Lincoln vehicle systems by completing web-based training via a learning management system. With Ford coming on board, LPLTC students now have the opportunity to gain entry-level Ford certifications.
Deville said 44 students are currently enrolled in his class. Students are given instruction and hands-on practice to prepare them for the ACE certification exam, which can earn them an entry-level position in the automotive service industry.
In the LPLTC automotive service course, students develop skills and knowledge to become a qualified auto technician, develop problem solving skills through automotive diagnostic testing, and develop management and entrepreneurial skills. Instruction areas in the two-year program cover brakes, electrical, steering and suspension, and engine performance.
The class prepares students for the Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certification exam, Deville said. Once a student passes the exam, they must complete two years of work experience in their area to be fully certified. Students are also offered Safety and Pollution Prevention (S/P2) training, which is industry recognized.
Students in Deville’s automotive service course spend half their time learning in a classroom, pouring over the details from a textbook or listening as he lectures at the front. The other half of the class is spent inside the LPLTC mechanic shop, where students practice what they just learned.
Additionally, students who complete one or two years of the course may go directly to work in entry-level positions at automotive dealerships, service centers, and parts stores.