First automotive class on hybrids offered at OwensWritten by Duane Ramsey | | firstname.lastname@example.org
The first automotive technology class on hybrid vehicles wrapped up this week at Owens Community College just in time for graduation May 6.
The first Hybrid Electric and Fuel Cell Vehicle class in the automotive technology program was offered during the spring semester at the Transportation Technology Center on the Toledo area campus.
The class is described as an introductory course covering the identification and operation of current hybrid, electric and fuel cell vehicles, including terminology, theory of operation and safety precautions, according to the college catalog.
The new course will be mandatory for all students in the automotive technology program so it will be offered every spring and fall semester, according to Tracy Campbell, chairman of Transportation Technologies at Owens.
Campbell reported that Owens had 203 students in the automotive technology program and about 500 overall in transportation technologies for the spring semester.
Several of the 17 students taking the hybrid course were scheduled to graduate with associate degrees in automotive technology.
Preston Pacey of Perrysburg took the hybrid vehicle class even though it wasn’t required for him to graduate May 6 with his associate degree in automotive technology.
“I learned a lot in this class that was information-packed. It’s like re-inventing the wheel working on hybrids, which are like a Play Station 4 on wheels with all the electronics and AC motors that can generate 383 volts,” Pacey said.
The students learned the basics of electric and fuel cell vehicles, including how to remove the high-voltage battery from it, said Rick Francis, a professor in automotive technology who designed and taught the class as an introduction to hybrid vehicles.
“You can actually hurt yourself if you don’t know what you’re doing, so we emphasized the safety aspects of the hybrid vehicles to avoid any injuries,” Francis said.
The college purchased a 2005 Toyota Prius from Thayer Chevrolet Toyota in Bowling Green so the students in the hybrid class would have a vehicle for hands-on mechanical experience. The students also got experience working on a Ford Escape hybrid that is used by campus security at Owens.
“The students reacted very well to the senior-level class on hybrid vehicles,” Francis said. “Some of the students are already working in jobs and continue to get additional training toward their degree.”
Pacey said he was fortunate to have a job waiting for him upon graduation as an automotive diagnostic technician for a large used car dealership in Northwest Ohio. He said getting his degree in automotive technology at Owens was a key factor in landing the job.
In addition to the automotive technology program, Owens offers other transportation technology programs for diesel engines, and specifically for Chrysler, Ford, GM, Caterpillar and John Deere vehicles.
The programs provide students with hands-on training on vehicles and heavy-duty equipment for those manufacturers toward possible jobs with those companies or dealers representing them.
For more information on transportation technologies at Owens, call (576) 661-7388.
On the web: visit www.owens.edu and click on links for more information.