Students in the Automotive Technology Program at Leeward Community College are utilizing the latest equipment and gaining hands-on experience in their trade thanks to a generous donation from Servco Auto Windward. The Windward Oʻahu dealership recently donated factory specialty tools and automotive parts valued at more than $204,000 to the Leeward program.
“The Leeward CC automotive training program is first-rate. It helped train and certify a number of our technicians. We hope that with this donation, we can help provide the next generation of automotive technicians with the tools they need to succeed,” said Dan Hirota, general manager of Servco Auto Windward.
This new donation complements the college’s inventory of 15 new General Motors cars and trucks that were donated earlier.
“General Motors and Servco Auto Windward have been supporters of Leeward Community College’s automotive program for more than 25 years,” said Chancellor Manny Cabral. “Our automotive staff has taught a wide range of courses to the technicians at many automotive dealerships throughout the state. This partnership with industry is an ongoing relationship that benefits local businesses and the manufacturer, technicians, customers and students.”
Nationwide, most community colleges and vocational programs face limitations in their ability to teach students using the latest technologies and procedures because the cost for necessary equipment is significant.
”These donations allow Leeward to teach the latest in technology as it relates to the modern vehicle. With the use of factory tools and parts, Leeward’s classes will be presented exactly as the manufacturer has designed them to be taught at their factory training centers,” said Jake Darakjian, Automotive Technology Program division chair. “Our students enter the workforce fully trained in the latest technologies and equipment. This ensures that local businesses are able to do quality repair jobs, and customers’ safety is ensured.”
The Leeward automotive program has been training qualified automobile personnel for 41 years. The program offers day and evening classes and typically has between 125 and 145 students working toward an associate’s degree in automotive technology.