Forsyth Tech Transportation Technology student Daniel Hanna won first place in the American Trucking Associations’ 2015 Technology & Maintenance Council’s (TMC) National Student Technician Competition, TMC FutureTech 2015, held in Orlando, Fla., recently. The Greensboro-based WheelTime Network, North America’s largest dedicated service and parts network for quality vehicle care, sponsored Hanna along with his classmate, Cody Styers, who placed sixth overall in the competition.
Hanna and Styers competed against students from tech schools around the country including Wyoming Tech, Lincoln Tech and Mid Florida Tech. This is the second year of the FutureTech competition and is part of an industry-wide initiative to attract a new generation of technicians to the field.
In a ceremony held on November 4 at Forsyth Tech’s Transportation Technology Center to honor Hanna and Styers, Mike Delaney, president and CEO of WheelTime, praised the students saying they were rubbing elbows with the very best maintenance technicians in the country while participating in FutureTech. He added that competitions are part of the way forward for students serious about a career in the industry.
“Competitions are an intense format for learning and accelerating skills needed to work in high performance teams. Maintenance shops are team-based environments where techs must work together efficiently and, most importantly, where services are done right the first time with as few come-backs as possible,” said Delaney. “FutureTech gives these students a chance to experience that professional work in a team environment. It also serves as a tremendous motivational tool for these students to continue excelling in their classes, and their future careers.”
During the ceremony, Delaney presented Hanna with one of his grand prizes—a tool set and tool box valued at $10,000 and donated by Cornwell Tools. Hanna also received a $2,500 check from PEAK Commercial & Industrial and a certificate for $2,500 worth of tools from MAC Tools.
Delaney announced that WheelTime has committed to taking two more Forsyth Tech diesel and heavy equipment students to FutureTech 2016, which will be held in Raleigh next year.
“The next generation of tech has a distinct advantage thanks to growing up with video games and smart technologies,” Delaney said. “Providing them with access to competitions, like FutureTech, will help them build confidence and proficiency in the application of diagnostic as well as mechanical skills to solve real-world vehicle maintenance and repair problems. When your goal is to keep vehicles moving and loaded, comprehensive skills are critical to repair quality and speed.”
On the day of the competition, Hanna was tested at skills stations involving electrical, lighting systems, torque fasteners, drive belts and wheel end. At the end of the day, Hanna had the highest overall score. In addition to attending Forsyth Tech full time, Hanna works part time at Piedmont Truck Center in Greensboro. Styers holds a full-time job at Salem Leasing while enrolled at Forsyth Tech.
“We couldn’t be more proud of Daniel and Cody,” said Alan Doub, Forsyth Tech’s program coordinator for Heavy Equipment & Transportation Technology. “Their high performance at the national level speaks to their talent, skill and dedication as technicians, a dividend that is going to pay off over and over throughout their careers. We are grateful for WheelTime’s support of and commitment to our students.”
As the winning college in the competition, Forsyth Tech received several prizes to support the ongoing training of students in the Diesel & Heavy Equipment Technology program, including a transmission from Eaton Fuller, a smoke machine from Redline, and a certificate for $2,500 worth of tools from MAC Tools.
Wheel Time was established in 2004 as a strategic alliance among all North American Detroit Diesel-Allison distributors. The founding goal of the Wheel Time Network was to adopt and implement a common set of quality metrics that would help members monitor and continually enhance specific service performance criteria as defined by their customers. Over $13 million in systems and staffing resources has been invested by Wheel Time member companies to create and manage systems and metrics that enhance repair quality, service consistency and customer satisfaction on all-makes of truck repairs.
In addition to more than 30 training facilities and more than 200 service centers located across North America, Wheel Time members also offer mobile repair services and on-site truck care through more than 1,500 service vehicles. For more information about the Wheel Time Network or Wheel Time University’s “Total Tech” program, or to find the nearest service location, log on to: www.wheeltime.com.
Forsyth Tech provides students with flexible educational pathways to a competitive workforce for the community and global economy. The college offers associate degrees, diplomas, and certificates in more than 200 programs of study, including programs that promote personal and professional development through non-credit courses and seminars, as well as customized training for business and industry. Forsyth Tech is the fifth largest community college in North Carolina and serves more than 35,000 students with approximately 1,500 full and part-time faculty and staff.