Diesel mechanics now AAS degree program!
August 18, 2017
LBW Community College is expanding the diesel and heavy equipment mechanics program and now offers an Associate in Applied Science Degree for graduates.
“This is a higher credential than previously offered and we are pleased future graduates can achieve a degree in the diesel program,” said LBWCC President Dr. Herb Riedel.
“Due to the Advanced Technological Education grant by the National Science Foundation (NSF), LBWCC faculty received 80 hours of professional development for teaching natural gas engine repair courses,” said Tammye Merida, LBWCC associate dean of applied technologies. “The degree program gives graduates skills to fill higher management positions, such as service managers, maintenance directors, and regional managers.”
The program expansion is effective fall semester 2017 following the approval of the accrediting organizations of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Committee on Colleges (SACSCOC), Alabama Community College System (ACCS), and the Alabama Commission on Higher Education (ACHE).
The additional courses include 22 credit hours of transferrable general education courses and seven credit hours of natural gas courses, and total 71 credit hours for the degree.
Merida said businesses and organizations have been helpful in gearing up for the expanded degree program.
“The diesel program has received equipment donations from business and industry in our service area. We have applied for grant funding for two natural gas and two late model diesel engines meeting the Tier Level IV final EPA regulations. The NSF grant is providing natural gas curriculum development and professional development,” she said.
For the natural gas portion of the curriculum, students are required to take and pass an initial one-credit hour natural gas safety course, followed by 12 contact hours in hands-on activities and two contact hours of classroom instruction per week, she said.
“We expanded the program because in today’s world, bus lines and refuse companies are converting to natural gas engines because it is environmentally friendly, cheaper than diesel fuel, and there is an abundant supply of natural gas in the United States,” said Merida.
“By adding the natural gas courses, LBWCC is producing a multi-skilled diesel mechanic for today’s workforce.”
For more information, call Eddie Spann, diesel and heavy equipment instructor, at 334-493-5366 or 334-493-5322. He can also be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.