Archive for the ‘Career and Technical’ Category

Student Safety Issues in the Automotive Lab

May 19, 2014
A container of caustic carburetor cleaner. No MSD sheet or protective gear.

A container of caustic carburetor cleaner. No MSD sheet or protective gear.

I wish all these pictures were photoshopped and not taken in high schools and tech colleges that are the training centers for our next generation of techs and service employees.

No I will not say where these are taken. I am invited sometimes to visit auto training programs and often asked by the administration to take a look. I am asked to  tell them if they should continue to fund the program or hire another teacher. All of these are the Bad and Ugly of programs. The good have been reported on earlier in posts and there are many fine, high quality programs with motivated instructors. Sadly these “Hobby Shops” are out there and have been going for years. Most of the ones where these pictures come from have been closed or have been overhauled. On these visits I have permission to video and take pictures. I then  cite the safety reasons, NATEF standards and generate a report for the administrators.

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Incandescent glass bulbs should never be used in any shop. Even rough service bulbs heat up and can cause burns and fires.

Just got this http://youtu.be/T7ESQzY6spI  please get rid of any glass incandescent lamps, drop lights etc. Is your lab or student worth a cheap light? Thanks Bob!

Yes the incandescent bulb will cause gasoline to explode if a drop gets on it when hot. Several shops burn every year due to the use of these. The hot metal of the frame will burn skin if touched by a hand or arm. Yes the handle on this light is taped up from a previous pulling out of the cord. IMHO these types of lights have no place in a lab.  I know personally of two retail operations that burned due to the employees use of these lights. I see these in labs. Please get rid of them and use something that will not harm a student.

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Yes that is an old fuel tank under the tires with some type of caustic carburetor cleaner in the 5 gal container. The MSDS on the Carb cleaner was not found but later I looked it up. Very harmful on contact with skin or eyes. No Personal Protective gear such as gloves were found. I asked what it was used for and was told the students clean parts with it. This cleaner is a hazardous materiel and must be disposed of properly
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Note the wire brush has no safety guard. I assume the chair is for sitting if you get tired working? The  grinder was not bolted down and there was no sign of eye protection or face shield. You know a wire brush sheds wire if you have ever used one. If you use one of these wire brushes on a grinder or power tool note that old brushes rapidly shed the wire pieces and they will stick in clothing and skin. Hate to know what they do to an eye. I suggest if you have to have one of these you replace it regularly and have a full face shield for the user. The stack of old tires is a disposal problem, certainly only a few are needed for instruction.

Safety of the student is paramount in any evaluation of a program. If a student is injured during the lab time no matter the cause or outcome, the accident is a problem for the instructor. Even minor issues that are bound to happen like small cuts and such are a hassle. Some instructors have gone their whole career without a serious incident. Operation of an training lab involving sharp objects, extreme temperatures, moving, rotating machines, hazardous chemicals, flammable liquids and gases and high voltage circuits is difficult in a safe organized shop. Teaching in the environment shown here in these pictures would be next to impossible.
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This exhaust hose reel is missing the hose. Running an engine in the lab requires the use of exhaust extraction. Passive systems may work but I doubt the effectiveness on all application. Every time I have observed  a passive system in use, the students complained of head aches. This is due to CO as the first symptom is headache.
The tire machine is not bolted down. I assume the acetylene torch set keeps it nice and secure?2013-01-30_10-44-01_36
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A face shield would be nice. So would proper storage of consumables.

Lot of these older brake service machines give good service, but this one has no safety guard. Note the storage or lack of it. Consumables everywhere in this lab.
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Top heavy machines can tip over and should be bolted down.

Any equipment that is designed by the manufacturer to be bolted down needs to be secured. Floor stripe is history
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Looks like the Exxon Valdez looking for a place to land. What many school systems don’t realize is that OSHA and EPA can fine them for things like this. Besides being a fire hazard the training of future techs is being done here with this as an example to them.

 At least they have a spill containment even if it grossly overloaded. The people at http://www.thenewpig.com can advise schools on what is needed to be compliant. Two students were recently seriously injured at a High School auto shop that was NOT accredited. see http://tinyurl.com/kbezo38
I was called to one of the new Charter School known as County  Academy Center of Technology. Well the name does not make the insides better. This program had been transplanted into a new building and the administration wanted to know why enrollment dropped from when it was at the high school. Anyone that understands children as teens knows they hate to give up their peer group and move to a new school that has no sports or clubs like  a comprehensive high school. These programs can become dumping grounds for the feeder schools. This was the lift that was being used. The welds were broken on the safety latches and this prevents the engagement of the locks for the arms. All four lifts were broken. While there I observed students working with no safety glasses on under the lift. I explained this to the administrator as a safety violation that could put him in jeopardy. Lifts should be certified every year.
.

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Rust streaks tell the age of the broken safety latch

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This lift is also broken. Improper placement of lift and raising a vehicle not set up correctly caused the arms to force the safety locks. This lock no longer lines up.


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Skateboard!

Clutter. Disorganized storage areas waste instructional time. Flammables are safer stored in lockers designed for containment. Teaching students proper organizational skills is a part of the operation of a lab. I am sure an advisory committee will appreciate a clean well organized lab for the training of their future employees
The same lab had tools and equipment scattered.
This lab was shared with a tech college for a night class with an adjunct instructor. I have not seen this type of program work anywhere. The adjunct instructor often as not is  a by the hour paid teacher and has no “Buy In” towards the program. Often time they are working for a college nearby and must keep up their own lab also, they simply don’t have the time.
Here is an air bag, battery and assorted parts on a steel table.  This project had parts over a wide area. No lab job sheets, task sheets or performance tests means there is a hobby shop atmosphere.

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Use project boxes for lab work that will be left over to next day.

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Gasoline storage is only allowed in approved storage lockers. Not in tool room.

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Batteries are in top right corner and air bag was live

The tool room had no organization and several gas cans with fuel in them. Parts bins can be used for projects. This hobby shop had none visibleDSC01938I opened a locker and found these tools. The administrator continually said how good the instructor was. We asked for safety glasses while we were there and the instructor left the room to find some. He never returned before I left.

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No Flammable locker and gas cans all over. Has no one ever seen a gasoline fire?

Clutter makes it hard for students to find the right tool or the part they were using. When I observe a lab like this I know that the instructor is overwhelmed and overworking because of a lack of organizing skills on the instructor’s part. Safe operation of this lab is almost impossible. No wonder the turn over for auto teachers is high.
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The main issue here is all the electrical demands of the shop floor are fed by the extension cord plugged in on the center of the wall. There was no organization of any of the tools or equipment.

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This is right in the lab with a plastic trash can nearby to add to the mix. These plastic trash cans give off poisonous fumes when they burn in the lab. Nice !

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This school is in a very well off county with lots of tax dollars. Seems the school board wanted to close the program. I was asked to evaluate the program. Over 60 auto dealers with in 20 miles and the only contact was a few phone calls to invite the dealers to an open house a few years ago. The teacher had been cut to half time.

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The instructor had cleaned up for my visit and had hauled off many truck loads of junk left over from a teacher that had retired. The admin of the school just wanted the problem to go away. This one is closed now.

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General clutter with no organized learning area. Hard to tell if anything safe can be accomplished.

 

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Outback we find oil drums with unidentified liquids in them. Who is responsible?

https://autoteachersonny.wordpress.com/2011/05/01/outback-and-in-sight-used-oil-and-safety-glasses-or-how-many-lawyers-do-you-know/

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A tool locker for special tools?

Special tools are just that “Special” Students should be taught that they command respect from their users.
Instructors should realize that every tool should have a place identified and well marked with the name of the tool, operation manual included for proper storage of the special tool. The assumption that any student would know how to find or use a special tool is, well foolish.

 

 

 

 

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This lab was considered by the administration to be the best possible . This clutter was here on two separate visits.

Battery eye wash

This lab is totally redone with new equipment and quality instructors. On the day of the visit when this was taken the school resource officers arrested a student with drugs in the lab. Now on the advisement from the advisory committee new teachers were hired and the program is now one of the best.

lab classroom

A classroom in the lab area is sometimes unavoidable. While not the best situation. Safety Glasses must be worn by all persons in the room when work is being done. This program had lost their accreditation a few years before this picture. The program has since been totally overhauled.

The schools often don’t see the safety issue as some unsafe practices are accepted in industry believe it or not!

Outside storage is cluttered and unused parts seem to collect in these places.

Outside storage is cluttered and unused parts seem to collect in these places.

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Here you have a old valve machine, a differential out of something and two cans of AC refrigerant along with a grinder missing guards and brake drums. The point of this picture is that there is no instructional organization.

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An antique machine that never caught on to handle a very hazardous material.

Developing a Program Advisory Committee

May 14, 2013

An Advisory Committee, or as what AYES calls, Business and Education Council does not come about in a vacuum. Ideally some one in the education sector decides they want input from the customer and asks advice of the future employers of the student who will be trained in the school. This could be a simple request or a detailed process. Hopefully we will build a symbiotic relationship that builds a win-win attitude for all stakeholders. Developing an active advisory takes time and effort on the part of the instructor and the key stakeholders at the school. I have never known of a excellent program that did not have a dynamic advisory that gives input, guidance and encouragement to the program.

Lowndes County High School Advisory for the Automotive Program

High School Advisory Meeting with former students,  business owners, service managers, technicians, school administrators, parents. interns and interested individuals.

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Nothing good comes from an advisory council that meets only to pat each other on the back and agree to meet again next time with nothing accomplished because each person and entity is focused on their own agenda, hidden or otherwise. For example a school has students ready to be hired but they have not graduated or are under 18. The advisory members say “No” our insurance prohibits us from hiring them. The school says “No” we can’t let students off campus to job shadow or interview independently at your dealership during school hours. This is Lose-Lose for everyone and yet we see advisory councils that run like this. No one is flexible or wants to think out side the box. I call this type of advisory a “Mutual Appreciation Society” and often this is the case.  Sometimes the school will hold advisory meetings and invite everyone to a large meeting of all the career fields in one place. The educators will tell the business people that attend what the educators have done and accomplished, often in “Edspeak” jargon and then proceed to tell the business people what they need to do to promote what ever the educators want to do. This has a tendency to drive the business person away because they see no benefit to their business in the meeting. In these trying times business needs to know that the program is a sustaining resource for future employees at every level of the automotive industry. Many instructors are unaware of who is at the dealership as the dealership or shop is unaware they as the taxpayer own the program. I much prefer the AYES model of the business becoming a stakeholder in the program. This requires a sharing of oversight and development that is a learning process for all involved. The first step is to build relationships and this takes time. In building my first advisory committee I went to a new dealership I had never visited. New owner and people from out of town had bought out and built a new dealership. I called and introduced my self and asked for an appointment with the owner. I arrived a few minutes early and gave my card with the school’s name on it to the receptionist. I wandered around the showroom and when the sales people found out I was not buying they ignored me. After about an hour a person came out and handed me a check for $50.00 made out to the school. I said “What’s this?” and was told that was their amount they gave to schools as they assumed I was here about the yearbook. I quickly explained and soon was handing back the check and explaining my AYES program to the owner. The owner introduced me to all the key staff and the dealership began a long and mutually beneficial relationship where we placed many students through the years. Eventually all the dealerships in that small county were on the advisory. Did the owners show up at all the meetings? No. Did some one from the dealership attend? Not always, but enough came to where I always had enough to do business. Would they have attended if all I had done was call on the phone or write a letter? No. My mentor in AYES taught me to visit and build the relationship from the top down. Then develop the relationship with the service manager and technicians. Visit one month before the meeting. Give them a copy and overview of the agenda. Give them action items to work on, Write them a week before and call a day before to remind them. Have the meeting around a lunch hour if you can. We have found this works best. Have them on a Thursday in the middle of the month also works best for me.

How about those other members you need, like parents and community members? I suggest attending the Rotary, Lions, Exchange and community clubs. Ask the membership if you can get on the program and have a Skills USA student do a very short presentation on your program. I have found this is a good way to get donations and support. Pick a parent with care, beware of hidden agenda in any one invited. Enjoy the ride!

Visit the NATEF web site www.natef.org for tips on building and maintaining your advisory. See http://www.natef.org/advisory_committee.cfm for the how to and what to do. Here are the required inputs from the advisory to meet NATEF standards

https://autoteacher.net/uploads/AdvisoryCommitteeTaskswithinNATEFSta.doc

Here is a video of an actual advisory committee lunch meeting.

http://www.schooltube.com/video/21bfb1980a694e83a98e/AYES%20B&E%20Meeting

Here is a set of interviews with advisory members, student interns, teachers

http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLA5AAB9BB025236BC

See for more information        https://autoteacher.net/NATEF_Certification.php

HTH,

Sonny

sonnyjreeves@hotmail.com www.autoteacher.net

Why would I want to be an Automotive Technician?

February 20, 2013

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Picture from; http://tinyurl.com/6huzch5

A lot of people are telling young people that they should be anything but an auto technician or be in the auto industry at all.  Many private collages promote automotive careers that pay well but with huge student loans. Most students are not aware that great opportunity’s with OEMS are sometimes fully funded if they are qualified.  Sure in some areas Micky D’s pays more to start, but what will you be doing next year or the years after? ( http://autop.ro/3Kr ) and they furnish tools and such to flip burgers and teach you to ask if they want fries with that.
Many dealerships don’t know where the nearest auto training school or technical college is at, as they are so focused on sales.  Nor do the local auto teachers know who or how to to talk to the business so they can have a business and educational beneficial relationship. Somehow we need to fix this gap in communication.

Sadly our industry’s workers are getting older as we speak  and with technology exceeding the wildest predictions of the engineers that create driver less cars and exotic powered engines we need younger, smarter technicians to service the vehicles of tomorrow right now!

Many criticize the current trend to get students into the auto industry via low tech positions. Sir Ken Robinson points out the deficiency of of current educational system in this TED talk. many of his points are very relevant to a hands on approach to learning.

http://www.ted.com/talks/sir_ken_robinson_bring_on_the_revolution.html

Be sure to watch Sir Ken’s other talks to understand his focus.

Many drop outs are prime candidates for the hands on training required to “Fix things” in many areas of expertise.

Here is what started this dialogue; please do not read this blog with out reading James’ story!

Wired Mag Article on James Hamilton, who started as an auto mechanic.  http://www.wired.com/wiredenterprise/2013/02/james-hamilton-amazon/

I asked James a question in this email;

Hi James, I read the wired article that said you started as an auto mechanic.

 My biggest challenge today is to get young people to consider a career as an auto technician. We have programs to start them but the student or the parent does not see the future in being a technician as rewarding. Could I have your thoughts on this?
I know your time is very valuable.
Thank you,
James replied;

“I might understand why some folks might find automotive technician less exciting than, say, fighter pilot. But when it comes to rewarding and to thinking through whether automotive technician is a rewarding role, I would say two things: 1) What is truly unrewarding is to not have a job and 2) what you learn as a mechanic can be applied and remain useful for entire lifetime. I learned an incredible amount as an automotive mechanic and I’m really happy I made that choice back when I was 17. Getting through an formal apprenticeship and becoming a licensed mechanic taught me the discipline and the focus to succeed at that role and gave me the confidence to take on others. The skills I learned at 17, I still apply today.
I see resumes all the time that have periods where the candidate was unemployed or weren’t challenging themselves and weren’t learning. It’s a mistake.” end of quote.

I know my personal journey was difficult and not of the standard of the day. I struggled with learning in traditional school after the 8th grade and dropped out after the ninth (see the blog http://semperfigeorgia.wordpress.com/for details)  trade school or Technical school/college as it is now was my salvation. Growing up on a farm and hating it was what drove me to cars and working on them, I wanted to learn to fix them so I could go somewhere I was not. The local junkyard with it’s old cars was much more exciting than hoeing a pea field all day in the hot sun. Having a car as a teenager gave me a power I could relate to.  I took the road less traveled and never looked  in the rear view mirror.

Regrets I have a few but that which is with out repair is without regard! I would rather be a happy ditch digger than an unhappy king.

Create, Share, Enjoy!

Remarkable Program, Remakable Teacher

February 2, 2013

We recently held our Georgia chapter of NACAT (http://www.nacat.org) conference and training session at Savannah Tech. (http://www.savannahtech.edu/ ) Our chapter meeting was held at Effingham Career Academy, (http://tinyurl.com/3ndcqs8) where Keith Cornell is the AYES (www.ayes.org) automotive instructor. Keith gave us a tour of his new lab and classroom, showing us many of the innovative ideas he has put in place. With one year of teaching at this new facility Keith has road tested and improved many of his designs for improving student learning in a school to work classroom and lab.

Fig #1. Keith uses single roll a round tool boxes for each task area. This one contains the special tools needed for brake service. The inventory control and ease of use by adopting this method of tool use will pay off in increased time on task for the students engaged in brake service in the lab.

Fig #2. Keith designed the tool set inventory control for all the tool sets. Color coded general tool sets for each student team. Lots of time invested to do this but the pay off is worth the effort when student learning is increased.

Fig #3. Clean and well organized lab will insure students will know how the 21st century work place is supposed to look and be kept with housekeeping skills learned here.

Fig #4. Keith modified and designed this cabinet with each class a drawer for safety glasses for each student. The importance of safety with our students can not be compromised or neglected by the instructor.

Fig #5. We did note one fire extinguisher that may have been out of date? Routine safety inspections by the Business and Education Advisory Committee will insure compliance with all Federal, State and local safety regulations.

Fig #6. Cover over emergency power cut prevents accidental interruption of service.

Fig#7 The lab at Effingham Career Academy is bright, clean and well organized. The students learn work ethics as they operate the shop to reflect the best example of the modern dealership and service center.

Fig #8. The lab is well planned so that everything has a place and a place for everything. When things are organized from the start then students will learn the habits that employers will want.

Here is link to video of Keith sharing his stadium seating classroom with the Georgia Auto Teachers.

As I toured the lab and classroom of this remarkable automotive program I was impressed with many of the innovative and creative ideas put into practice of the learning environment. I did not see anything that could not be replicated or adopted by anyone’s program. Even in programs with no or low budget some of the ideas would use existing items to create or replicate the idea. I visit a lot of schools around the US and meet a lot of teachers. I visit schools that have limited resources, disadvantaged students and students with more problems than I will mention today. The defining truth is this; The teacher makes the difference in the learning environment. Several years ago I attended a conference when I first started teaching and the presenter had this handout. I can not recall him today or I would give credit to that presenter.

He told stories and spoke of teachers he knew and students he had taught. He made a lasting impression on me and my teaching. I will share a copy of the handout he gave us.

Characteristics of remarkable Teachers

  • They are lifelong learners
  • They seek excellence
  • They have gifts to share
  • They are encouragers
  • They are called out to teach
  • They are positive people

 

  • They are life changers

  • They love their craft

  • They see the gifts of others

  • They mix stories and humor to connect

  • They champion their students

  • They teach from the heart and the mind

 

Create! Share! Enjoy!

TEFGA is All About Student Success in Transportation Careers

February 1, 2013

Transportation Education Foundation of Georgia organizes the Career Expo for the Georgia State SkillsUSA Conference to be held March 21, 22 @ the Georgia International Convention Center. This is one of our best kept secrets in Career Education. You and your company need to be involved in this awesome gathering of career focused young people.

Here is a report from the TEFGA .org site on last year’s Expo:

The 2012 SkillsUSA Career Expo and Championships was a huge success with over 7,000 participants. TEFGA   _2013TEFGA Fact Sheet    helped to organize the largest student focused career expo in the state, in which for two exciting days students are able to explore different career opportunities within the transportation fields, network with industry representatives and discover the options available for post-secondary education. The best students from across the state competed in competitions to test their transportation knowledge. These contests ranged from Automotive Service Technology and Collision Repair to Diesel Equipment Technology to Fight Operations and Aviation Service. Other contests tested student’s knowledge of small engines and marine and motorcycle service. The results were students realizing their goals and being rewarded for their hard work, through prizes, recognition and often scholarships for additional education.

To see the top teams in the nation compete  http://www.hotroddersoftomorrow.com/ Georgia has three of the top five teams for 2012.

The Georgia SkillsUSA Conference  http://www.skillsusageorgia.org/

To volunteer to work with the expo, To have your company showcased at the expo,  To meet some of the best young people focused on technical careers contact Erin.

For more information on how you can get involved in TEFGA’s activities to build Georgia’s future workforce in the transportation industries, please contact Erin Studstill:

Visit our Facebook Page Follow us on Twitter

Email: erinstudstill@tefga.org

Click on the links for more information.

SkillsUSA_CareerExpo_Flyer

Video from 2011 Expo and Skills Conference,  http://tefga.org/Videos.htm

http://tinyurl.com/2013-SkillsUSA-CareerExpo

TEFGA Expo and Skills Sponsorship Form

2013TEFGA General Donation Form

TEFGA Sponsors Industry Accreditation Workshop for Georgia Teachers

November 9, 2012

NATEF Workshop for Georgia Teachers.  November 1, 2012

Georgia Department of Education Program specialist Ms. Carol Burke presented the latest news to the teachers and explained the grants available for program accreditation. New this year is funding from TEFGA for the cost of NATEF accreditation application, manuals and site visit.

24 Georgia automotive teachers and administrators attended a NATEF (www.natef.org) workshop on industry accreditation at Hutchings Career Center in Macon Georgia. The event was hosted by TEFGA (www.tefga.org) Automotive Teachers from post secondary Technical College System of Georgia and DOE Secondary schools received a update on the the new model for NATEF and AYES from AYES South East Field Manager Sonny Reeves. DOE Program Specialist Ms. Carol Burke presented to the group about opportunities and news from the DOE and TEFGA.  New updates from NATEF are on this site http://www.natef.org

24 of Georgia’s automotive teachers and administrators attended the NATEF Accreditation update workshop from high schools, career academy and technical colleges.

Highlights of the workshop are the ASE Student Certification, http://www.asestudentcertification.com/

The NATEF 2012 Standards and task lists for MLR, AST and MAST. these are on the New NATEF site www.natef.org

Presentation on the TEFGA Expo by Ms. Burke, video     http://youtu.be/umMlFYjpfxU

The AYES model for interns and mentoring  www.ayes.org

Contact information   cburke@doe.k12.ga.us   sonny.reeves@ayes.org

Lowndes County High School adds AYES program to NATEF Accredited Automotive Program

November 6, 2012

Many good things are going on almost behind the scenes in our career programs.  I visit a lot of very good Automotive programs and here is one that is special to me. I first met Cory and Don via the New Teacher class at Valdosta State. Dr. Charles Backes has taught this course for new Trade and Industry teachers for quite some time. I presented to the class Corey and Don when they started teaching and right off I knew they were remarkable!

They have never let me down. They took an old, outdated and unsafe auto program; and created a safe, industry recognized learning environment.

The program supervisors Mr. Bruce Crook and Ms. Lynne Wilson have every reason to be proud of these two teachers, as they demonstrate excellence in education! It is wonderful to see what happens when professionals with the right attitudes get together on a team effort.

The Business and Education meeting starts with a lunch and everyone is introduced. Corey introduces former student and now Griner Cadillac’s master transmission specialist Michael Powell to his right. Mike Marafino,(white shirt) service manager Griner Cadillac looks on, as does Steve Riley,(blue shirt) service manager, Langdale Honda listens to Corey.

Many of the members have current and former students of the program as employees

Many of the members have current and former students of the program as employees. All agreed that the AYES model of the mentor and intern will benefit the franchise and the students of the program.

The Advisory Committee for the Lowndes County High School

Automotive Program recently approved affiliation with AYES.  The purpose of Automotive Youth Educational Systems (AYES)  is to develop career-ready, entry-level automotive technicians and service personnel through a series of Business and Education partnerships.  High school automotive technology students are presented the opportunity and guidance to explore rewarding automotive careers, and provided the tools and support to learn, develop and practice  the technical, academic and employability skills needed for success. The capstone of the AYES model is a 320-hour workplace internship, usually during the summer between the junior and senior year, where working along side a trained and qualified mentor – usually an ASE-certified Master Technician – the student prepares for entry-level career.

LCHS Automotive Advisory members represent many of the local dealerships and service centers.  Pictured left to right:  (Front row) Steve Riley, Langdale Honda; Don Faircloth, Lowndes High; Mike Marifino, Tommer Griner Cadillac/Nissan; Sonny Reeves, AYES Field Manager; David Wilson and Scott Colwell, Langdale Ford.  (Back row) Roger Christie, Lowndes County Schools Transportation Director; Michael Powell, Tommy Griner;  Bruce Crook and Corey Nawolski, Lowndes High School.  Members committed to support the program but unable to attend the meeting are

Prince Chevrolet – Alan McLendon
Pipkin Motors – Sue Steadman
Langdale Hyundai – Staphanie Augustine
Valdosta Toyota – Terrill Head
Cass Burch – Rusty Griffin (Quitman Dodge and Chevrolet)
                    Scott McQuaid (Valdosta Dodge and Jeep)
Attending the meeting and taking the picture:
Lynne J. Wilson
Director of CTAE and Public Relations
Lowndes County Schools
1592 Norman Drive
Valdosta, GA  31601
The Automotive program is fortunate to have two highly motivated teachers. Here is more about these excellent teachers.
                                                                                            Automotive   Instructor Don Faircloth explains a math problem in a Brakes class

Don Faircloth II – Don is married with 2 children, 19 and 13. He has been an Automotive teacher at Lowndes County High School in Valdosta, Georgia for 9 years. Don has been around cars most of his life. He helped his father rebuild his first engine at age 7, and rebuilt his first engine solo at age 14. After his time in the U.S. Navy studying Nuclear Physics, he returned to Valdosta and began a career in the automotive industry. Don has worked in many aspects of the industry; from managing an AutoZone parts store for 5 years, to working at independent garages, to working at factory dealerships before receiving the opportunity to become a teacher. Don is an ASE Master Technician, as well as a Ford Master Technician. He has received over 600 hours of specialized training from Ford Motor Co. Since Don has began teaching in 2004, he has returned to school and received his Bachelors of Science in Education and his Masters of Education degrees from Valdosta State University. He is currently on track to start his Doctorate degree in the spring. Teaching is Don’s passion. He loves the opportunity to shape our youth into valuable and contributing members of society and help keep our industry thriving through generations to come.

Corey shared how many new items were recently purchased for the students to use in training.

Corey Nawolski is an Automotive instructor at Lowndes County High School (LCHS) in Valdosta, Georgia. He began working on cars with his father as a young child. When Corey enrolled in High School (at Lowndes High), he began taking automotive classes. During his senior year, Corey transitioned into the Youth Apprenticeship program where the school systems transportation department employed him. In 2005, Corey transitioned from being a technician into the teaching profession. In 2009, he was honored as the Georgia Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) New Teacher of the Year; Corey then went on to win the New Teacher of the Year award for Region Two (Southeastern United States). While actively seeking to improve the LCHS Automotive program, Corey has pursued higher education. He has completed his undergraduate and Master’s degree. In addition, he is working on his doctorate and should complete it during the upcoming summer.

For information on obtaining NATEF   accreditation for your program please contact www.natef.org

For information on the industry recognized AYES model for interns and mentors please contact http://www.ayes.org

Automotive Math

October 31, 2012

Automotive math

Instructor Don Faircloth, shares a demonstration of math problem for students in a brakes class.

More to come……

AYES, Automotive Yes! Why should I have an AYES program?

August 23, 2011

Automotive Youth Educational Systems and School to Career Opportunities.

When we go to purchase something like a automobile we look for the features and benefits. If the car does not have the features I want or require, then I may not buy the car. Here is a story tellers view of the question “Why should I have an AYES program ?”

A new dealership had opened and I wanted to meet the owner to let him know about my AYES program www.ayes.org; so I called for an appointment after school so I could stop by on my way home. The new dealership was expansive,  high tech, and geared for sales and service with all operations in one location.   The old one he had bought out was small and family owned. The new dealership was a GM franchise. I have students at another GM dealership nearby in another city. The day of the appointment I arrived fifteen minutes early, presented my card and asked the receptionist to tell Mr. Dealer I was there for our 4:30 appointment.

see https://autoteachersonny.wordpress.com/2009/11/ for this  story on Advisory Committee building.

I wandered around the showroom and when the sales people found out I was not buying they immediately ignored me. After about an hour a person came out and handed me a check for $50.00 made out to the school. I said “What’s this?” and was told that was the amount they gave to schools as they assumed I was here about the Yearbook. I quickly explained this was not my purpose, as I handed back the check and began explaining my AYES program to the owner. He, then, introduced me to all the key staff. The dealership and I began a long and mutually beneficial relationship where we placed many students through the years. Eventually all the dealerships in that small county were on the Advisory Committee. Did the owners show up at all the meetings? No. Did some one from the dealership attend? Not always, but enough came to where I always had enough to do business. Would they have attended if all I had done was call on the phone or write a letter? No.

This is one the major benefits of an AYES program. The development of a active Business and Education Advisory Committee is so much easier with the power of AYES. While NATEF accreditation validates your program, AYES gives you the relationships to open doors at the dealerships. When I first attended an AYES conference Don Gray was speaking on the value of relationships and I being new to AYES followed his plan to build relationships so that my students would benefit.  “It is all about relationships” Don Gray

I can make a call or an email to the key people at our OEM partners of AYES and have someone that knows me, has a interest in our interns and possibly help with the hiring of the intern by a reluctant dealership. The relationships we build at our conferences and meetings is priceless in today’s employment market.

We could look at the tangible features of AYES like the resources of OEM service and training. Online we have the latest service information and finest training from the partners of AYES. Our partners also open their training centers doors for AYES instructors each summer on a space available basis so that we can obtain our 40 hours of Service Training. Honda has for several years set aside a week for instructors to train at their Southeast Training Center. I used the Honda curriculum materials to train a class for one semester. I told the students they were special and this was Honda training developed for them, only this class was privileged to use the training and they respected that by applying themselves to the tasks. Now a few years later those same students that were trained as entry level “Express Service Techs” are at the same dealerships they were interned at and now enjoying gainful employment in their chosen career.

I do feel that the benefit that is worth the most is “intangible” and this benefit relates back to the development and maintenance of the Business and Industry Council. It is through those relationships we build every day as an instructor of an AYES program that our programs grow! Our students are introduced to the world of work, interviewed, job shadow and intern with their mentor at the businesses in our communities. This why we say that AYES is the premier “School to Work Career Model” in the USA.

To learn more about AYES visit http://www.ayes.org   To learn more about NATEF visit http://www.natef.org

AYES Presentation

July 16, 2011

Time Passes Will YouNACAT2011a1

Click on the link above to download the powerpoint of the presentation of “Developing the 21st Century Classroom”

The slides have links embedded for you to click on to learn more about developing your classroom.

Presented at the 2011 AYES conference in Seattle from an earlier presentation at NACAT 2010 and 2009

Constantly updated….stay in touch