Students Get Sneak Peak at Innovative Automotive Technology Program

For students who are serious about furthering their knowledge of automotive technology, a visit to the Herbert Kurz Automotive Technology Center at Rockland Community College is a must.

A group of students from the SWBOCES Automotive Technician Program discovered that and more during a special class trip to the state-of-the-art center on March 29.

The 27,000 square-foot facility includes five classrooms, a Snap-on certified lab, with 10 lifts and customized Snap-on equipment, which is considered the industry’s high-end tools of choice.

Automotive Department Spokesperson Doreen Zarcone led the morning tour by telling students about the college’s popular associate’s degree program in automotive technology.

Students who complete the program receive 40 credits in automotive technology and 20 general education credits.

On-the-job training is a crucial facet of the program, she explained, with students getting the opportunity to train for four weeks each semester at a participating Ford ASSET (Automotive Student Service Education Training) dealership.

Assistant Professor and Dept. Chair Corey Ratner and Professor Colm Derasmo, the center’s Ford ASSET coordinator, talked about the opportunities open to students when they graduate from the renowned program.

They also spoke to the shortage of auto technicians in the industry and the rate at which the auto industry is becoming more and more automated.

“Today’s automotive techs are bordering electrical engineers,” said Professor Derasmo. “It’s a cool time that we’re in.”

Students were also given information on the admissions process and the requirements that are needed to apply for the program as well a complete tour of the building.