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supply for technicians than postsecondary insti- tutions, such as vocational schools and hands-on experience. But the continuing increase in de- mand for technicians, and the general decline in technician college graduates, are only aggravating the existing shortage of trained technicians. “Training of new entry-level technicians in


will offer a blended approach of fac- tory-based training with companion online courses. Third, the Master Level will become available to those who have successfully completed the first two tiers and want to be considered experts, with the ability to train others back in their shop. “Everyone should be veracious


lifelong learners, seeking continuous improvement to keep up with and even ahead of the impending technical and technology changes,” said Carol Dietrich, technical training director at Blue Bird Corporation. “Investing in training, to some, seems like an investment with little return. However, it is vital to make those investments, to successfully keep school buses run- ning at the optimal level.” The Thomas Built Institute,


meanwhile, is scheduled for May in Greensboro, North Carolina and July in Reno, Nevada.


Technician Shortages Amid High Demand School bus operators are in direct


competition with other automo- tive, diesel and collision industries to attract and retain technicians, who are increasingly in short supply. The TechForce Foundation in December released updates to its technician sup- ply and demand reports, which foresee a worsening shortage of transportation technicians in 2019. As demand for technicians contin-


ues to rise, the potential supply that is graduating from colleges continues to decrease. There are other sources of


alternative fuels is critically important, as we start to see more of these vehicles across all transporta- tion industry segments,” said Greg Settle, national initiatives director for the TechForce Foundation, a nonprofit organization that supports professionals and students in technician careers. TechForce Foundation is funded in part by automotive industry companies and education-


al institutions, such as the NASCAR Technical Institute and Universal Technical Institute. It offers student scholarships for vehicle technician training and recruitment resources. In fact, more than $2.0 million in scholarships and grants are awarded each year. “While the shortage continues to worsen, the good news is the transpor-


tation industry is organizing to do something about it,” reported Jennifer Maher, CEO of TechForce. “TechForce Foundation’s FutureTech Success campaign is leveraging the industry’s collective voice to inspire the next generation of technicians and address the root causes of the shortage.” ●


We have a “no child left behind” policy too.


Zonar’s EVIR system saves you time, money and worry. Using one of our handheld devices, drivers simply scan the EVIR tags that are placed in and around the bus, including the back of the bus to make sure end-of-shift checks are done.


State-of-the-art solutions for every fl eet. Our Electronic Verifi ed Inspection Reporting (EVIR®


) system


is just one of the many ways we make sure that your fl eet — and its precious cargo — never get left behind.


877.843.3847 • zonarsystems.com


Client: Zonar Systems – Child Safety Ad #2 - No child left behind Created by: Publication:


GSS Communiqations, 323.939.1181


www.stnonline.com 21 Student Transportation News, STN, 11/17 issue


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