November 1, 2002

Ford sponsors automotive training program at BC Institute of Technology

Burnaby, British Columbia – The B.C. Institute of Technology’s School of Transportation
has partnered with Ford of Canada and local Ford and Ford-Lincoln
dealers to provide advanced training for automotive students.

Ford of Canada’s Vice President of Customer Service, Gilles Contant, and
BCIT Vice-President Education Tony Tanner will officially launch the
BCIT Ford ASSET (Automotive Student Service Educational Training)
program on Wednesday, Nov. 6 at the BCIT Burnaby Campus.

“The addition of the Ford ASSET program to the existing array of
automotive programs, keeps BCIT at the forefront of technical training
in British Columbia. Students can access this program and earn a
diploma. On graduation, they will be able to enter into our Bachelor of
Technology in Technology Management program to earn their degree,” said
Lane Trotter, BCIT’s Dean of Transportation.

Said Ford Canada’s Vice President of Customer Service, Gilles Contant,
“Ford of Canada is committed to supporting quality technical training in
an industry that is facing a critical shortage. With our ASSET program,
BCIT students will get real-life work experience at Ford and
Ford-Lincoln dealerships. After graduation, these students will be
ready to serve our customers in a rapidly changing, high-tech industry.”

Changes in automotive technology are providing new opportunities for
individuals looking for a career in this service industry. Today’s
automotive technicians require a high level of skill and knowledge. To
meet the need, Ford of Canada and its local Ford and Ford-Lincoln
dealers, and BCIT have committed to a two-year college diploma program
leading to a bachelor program in automotive and heavy equipment
management or automotive engineering.

As of this month, Automotive Service Technician (AST) program students
are able to receive training, exposure and focus on the Ford product.
Students receive automotive technical and business training during three
18-week academic terms. The first two academic terms alternate with two
18-week co-op work terms in an automotive repair facility. On successful
completion of the program, students will receive an automotive service
technician diploma and qualify for credit towards all four levels of
technical training requirements in the provincial AST apprenticeship
program and up to two years credit toward the four-year apprenticeship
time service requirement, at the discretion of their employer.

This specialized training program has been designed to meet the need for
skilled technicians who can diagnose and repair the sophisticated
systems in today’s motor vehicles. It is also for those with an interest
in the automotive field, but who aspire to management positions in the
industry. The automotive industry requires skilled administrative
personnel who have technical as well as business training, to manage the
growing automotive service business.

The program is a vehicle for those interested in opportunities for
advancement to management positions in the industry; and/or for advanced
studies leading to a degree in automotive management or automotive

The Automotive Service Technician program received national
accreditation in May 1999 from the Canadian Automotive Repair and
Service (CARS) Council. Students who complete the Automotive Service
Technician diploma program receive full credit towards a bachelor of
technology degree at BCIT.

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