Owensboro Community & Technical College (OCTC) in Owensboro, Ky., was named the 2014 Technical School of the Year by Tomorrow’s Tech magazine and WIX Filters during a surprise ceremony recently for 100 students and instructors of the college’s Automotive Technology program.
OCTC is the seventh recipient of the annual program to find and name the best technician training school in the country. WIX and O’Reilly Auto Parts are title sponsors of the national award in conjunction with Tomorrow’s Tech, a Babcox Media publication dedicated to automotive students.
“Owensboro Community & Technical College is a great example of an educational institution that is focusing on the future of an entire industry,” said Mike Harvey, brand manager for WIX Filters. “Specializing in automotive technology, diesel and alternate fuels, OCTC is exactly what we envisioned when we started the School of the Year competition – a highly skilled technical program dedicated to training the next generation of technicians.”
As the 2014 School of the Year, Owensboro Community & Technical College’s automotive program received:
• A 2,500 donation to the school’s Automotive Technology program from WIX Filters.
• Uniform for every student from Red Kap, a manufacturer and distributor of comfortable, durable work-related clothing and outerwear.
• Merchandise from O’Reilly and WIX Filters.
• Travel for the school’s instructor and a guest to Las Vegas to attend Babcox Media’s recognition dinner at the Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo (AAPEX).
“We pride ourselves on building an automotive program that provides our students with the skills and advanced training necessary for careers in an industry that is constantly evolving,” said Lewis Nall, automotive and diesel program coordinator at OCTC. “Being named School of the Year is an incredible honor and we’re thrilled to share this with our students and our school.”
The School of the Year program is open to all high schools and post-secondary schools that have a subscription to Tomorrow’s Tech magazine. Of the 151 entries for this year’s contest, 46 were from different high schools, technical schools and colleges in four geographic regions of the United States. Twenty schools were asked to submit a video highlighting their technical programs. Judges selected four finalists, or one from each region, from the video entries.
“Winning this national honor is quite an achievement,” said Dean Martin, publisher of Tomorrow’s Tech. “We continue to see remarkable improvements in automotive education programs throughout the country, and Owensboro is no exception. It is our goal, along with the contest’s sponsors, to recognize the skills and knowledge future automotive service technicians are taking with them into the field.”
This year’s three runners-up are: Assabet Valley Regional Technical High School, Marlborough, Mass.; Iredell-Statesville Schools Automotive Technology Center, Troutman, N.C.; and Lakes Region Community College, Laconia, N.H. Each runner-up will receive a professional automotive tool set and $250 gift card from O’Reilly Auto Parts, as well as work shirts from Red Kap.
Owensboro Community & Technical College joins past School of the Year recipients Sinclair Community College, Dayton, Ohio (2013); Clover Park Technical College, Lakewood, Wash. (2012); Arapahoe Community College, Littleton, Colo. (2011); Caddo Career & Technology Center, Shreveport, La. (2010); Ohio Technical College, Cleveland, Ohio (2009); and Waubonsee Community College, Sugar Grove, Ill. (2008).