Volvo Cars USA LLC has announced it will contribute 36 new vehicles to include twin-engine plug-in hybrid vehicles to Universal Technical Institute‘s core automotive training program as part of its national Vehicle Lease Program for Schools initiative. The effort supports Volvo’s strategy to work directly with UTI and other educational institutions to put state-of-the-industry technology into the hands of students training for transportation careers, and ultimately increase the number of skilled technicians in the field.
“For nearly 20 years, Volvo has trusted Universal Technical Institute to train the technicians who maintain and service its products across the nation,” said UTI Executive Vice President of Campus Operations Sherrell Smith. “This new program will give more students the opportunity to work on the latest technology in the market – ensuring they graduate from UTI ready to hit the ground running in a fast-evolving industry with high demand and earning potential.”
The new cars – to be delivered across 11 UTI campuses nationwide – will support UTI’s hands-on training with Volvo’s advanced technologies, such as collision avoidance and advanced electrical diagnosis. In preparation for this unique access to these state-of-the-industry vehicles, UTI is revising its core curriculum to ensure that all students have the opportunity to experience learning on the Volvo cars in the lab.
“Volvo Cars sees an increasing demand for qualified technicians as the company is rapidly adopting electrified powertrains across its entire lineup,” said Jeffrey Jennings, senior manager, technical training at Volvo Car USA. “Getting our hybrid vehicles in the hands of future technicians is critical to the growth of our business.”
Upon completion of UTI’s core training programs, UTI students who wish to specialize in Volvo vehicles have the option to continue their studies through the 14-week Volvo Service Automotive Factory Education (SAFE) program, exclusively offered at UTI’s campus in Avondale, Arizona. Successful MSAT applicants often are sponsored by Volvo and local dealerships to cover the cost of tuition. After two years of employment, and ASE Master Certification, they’re eligible for Master Technician status.
UTI is unique for its 11 automotive Manufacturer Specific Advanced Training (MSAT) programs. The specialized manufacturer training and certifications that students receive through UTI’s MSAT programs, including the Volvo SAFE program, are acquired in just a few months and can often take two years or more to garner in the field.