Pruden Center, dealership partner to train technicians

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Staff report

Just as cars and trucks have become increasingly sophisticated and dependent on computers, the skills of service technicians have become increasingly technical and more demanding.

Gone is the image of service technicians as simply someone who knows how to change a carburetor. The amount of jobs for well-qualified service technicians is growing, which can be attributed to both the increasing number of vehicles on the road, and to the ever-increasing use of electronics and computers in today’s cars and trucks.


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To grow the number of qualified technicians, Starr Motors Incorporated is supporting the Automotive Youth Education System (AYES) at The Pruden Center for Industry and Technology, which is helping to introduce students to careers in the automotive industry.

&uot;Believe it or not, today’s Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge cars and trucks contain more technology than the Apollo spacecraft that carried astronauts to the moon and back,&uot; said Charles E. White Sr., of Starr Motors Incorporated. &uot;A career in the automotive service field requires intensive and extensive training.&uot;

AYES prepares students for entry-level career positions or advanced studies in automotive technology. The program also prepares students for the ongoing education that automotive manufacturers provide. For instance, every day, nearly 1,000 technicians attend training on the latest diagnostic equipment and vehicle updates used to service Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge vehicles.

The AYES program is introduced to students at participating schools during their junior year. In addition to taking the required academic courses toward high school degrees, students experience challenging classroom/laboratory courses in basic automotive technology or collision repair and refinish. Eligible students will then begin an internship at a dealership on a full-time basis during the summer between junior and senior years. Under the guidance of a mentor, an experienced technician, students will develop both their technical skills and their skills as valuable employees. Upon high school graduation and AYES certification, participating students are prepared to begin full-time, entry-level employment, or to advance their technical education.

More than 410 schools participate with AYES and approximately 3,800 dealers support the initiative in 45 states. Visit the AYES website ( for more information on AYES.