Advantage Truck Group (ATG) will host the Diesel Equipment Technology competition for the 2021 SkillsUSA Massachusetts State Championship. The state’s top diesel technology students will compete at the event held at ATG’s Shrewsbury facility on April 30. The winner will represent Massachusetts at the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference virtual competition in June.
The annual competition helps encourage students with an interest and aptitude for diesel technician-related work. It also highlights career opportunities in this field. While the need for technicians extends across Massachusetts, transportation, warehousing, and logistics are Central Massachusetts’ top priority industries with diesel technicians facing among the most significant employee shortages.
“The need for qualified diesel technicians in Massachusetts creates strong job prospects for students, and skills competitions like this help highlight these opportunities,” says ATG president and CEO, Kevin Holmes. “ATG is proud to be able to provide this support for SkillsUSA Massachusetts, as we see this as a vital part of technical education in the region that will help build the next generation of skilled technicians.”
This year’s championship includes nine high schools, six school districts, and 12 students. The students competing qualified for the event by achieving top scores on written exams. During the event, the students will complete tasks cycling through 10 workstations. The tasks will challenge their knowledge of tools, precision measurement, specific vehicle components, and job interview skills. Stations include tasks related to engine diagnostics, electrical systems, brakes, steering, air systems, and air conditioning.
Additionally, the competition will present challenges to diagnose and repair several pre-assigned problems under the hood of a live vehicle. This challenge gives them the opportunity to test their skills in a situation they may encounter as a professional technician.
Finally, the winner will earn four hours of training with a Master Diesel Technician at ATG’s facility to help prepare for the national competition. In addition to hosting this year’s competition, ATG manages the event and designs the tasks at each testing station.