As UBTech continues to bring opportunities of employment and education into the Basin the support of local companies grows as well. Recently, Simplot Phosphates has donated a 1999 Wilson CF900 48-foot flatbed to the Heavy Duty Diesel program. The trailer is no longer used and needs repairs to the ABS braking system and hydraulics. Simplot hopes that it can give students hands-on experience in repairs. “There’s a big need and we have trouble filling the ranks with qualified heavy duty diesel technicians,” says Ty Clines, Simplot Maintenance Manager. “It’s an extremely low percentage of diesel graduates who go into mining statewide.” Not only did Simplot donate a trailer, they have collaborated to offer one externship through a pilot program. Nine students of the Heavy Duty Diesel applied for a three month hands-on training position at Simplot. Following that is three months of hands-on tutoring at Wheeler Machinery. There is a possibility that the externship program can be expanded to allow three or four more students in the future. Also there is a chance that it can turn into a full-time job with Simplot.
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