Senior Automative Students Earn Certification, Get Real-World Jobs

Out of the Classroom, Into the World

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Senior Automative Students Earn Certification, Get Real-World Jobs

Zach Adams, left, and Bryce Thomas, right.

Zach Adams, left, and Bryce Thomas, right.

Zach Adams, left, and Bryce Thomas, right.

Zach Adams, left, and Bryce Thomas, right.

Rebecca Eaves, Managing Editor

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What do you think of when you think of a classroom? Teachers, pencils, papers, and desks.

For eight hard-working students, their classroom consists of a hands-on, working experience.

The Area Technology Center gives students the opportunities to get their certification in eight different focus areas.
One of these focus areas is Automotive.

The automotive pathway equips students with the tools they need to be able to pass the ASE certification test.
With this certification students like Bryce Thomas and Zach Adams were able to find jobs where they can utilize the skills they’ve learned.
Thomas and Adams began working for their certification their sophomore year by taking Maintenance and Light Repair A.

After taking Section A, students go on to take Sections B and C their junior year and Section D their senior year.

Adams, a senior, is working as a technician at alvoline in Winchester while Thomas, also a senior, is working at Subaru in Lexington.

“The job search process was easy, to be honest,” said Adams. “As long as you got done what you needed to, the teachers will help you find a job within your career pathway.”

Thomas also found success while job searching. “I went to several dealerships and told them that I was a ASE-certified student and knew basic knowledge on cars, which helped me get the job,” said Thomas.

Adams has received many benefits by being able to spend part of his week in a working environment.

“It’ll set me ahead of other students because it’ll look good on resumes,” he said. “I can say I am a skilled, certified technician.”

Thomas has also been reaping the rewards of this program and the ATC.

“The ATC has given me the opportunity to go after my passion of being a mechanic and getting hands-on experience in an actual automotive shop and setting,” he said.

Thomas has also picked up many other skills like working with customers and gaining more knowledge about cars.
Kyle Sward is the teacher who runs the automotive pathway and teaches all four Maintenance and Light Repair Classes.

“Most of these students haven’t had jobs prior to that, so they get a skill of going to work every day, being on time, following directions, and making decisions on how to fix the car,” said Sward. “They’re going to work and they’re getting paid. They work about 24 hours a week.”

Thomas and Adams both agree that the ATC and Sward have helped them with this experience. “People should pick the automotive pathway because Mr. Sward is a great teacher,” said Adams. “He’s also a very good friend. The best part about it is when you’re in my position as a senior and going through co-op with Mr. Sward.”

The ATC and co-op gives these students the opportunity to use the skills they have and gain new ones.

The classroom merges with the real world. “If you aren’t a paper and pencil kind of learner,” said Thomas, “the ATC can help you find an alternative pathway that only requires your passion for hands-on learning.”