Donated diesel engines give students an edge

by Kathleen McCoy  |   

The Transportation and Power Division of UAA's Community and Technical College is the recipient of two diesel engines donated by Cummins Northwest, headquartered in Portland, Oregon.

The donated engines, a 450-horsepower Cummins ISX and a 250-horsepower Cummins ISB, arrived at UAA in October 2009. The engines are valued at nearly $60,000. Students will begin working with the engines in January as part of the Transportation and Power Division's Heavy Duty Fuel Systems course. The new engines will help students learn about the 2007 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on-highway diesel engine emission standards and give them background on global energy technology issues.

"Cummins Northwest has been a valuable partner with the Automotive and Diesel Technology program for many years," said Kelly Smith, director the program. "Donations like these engines, and input regarding student outcomes and curriculum, are essential to keeping our program relevant to the workplace, especially with the rate of change in technology."

Cummins Northwest has supplied horsepower to the Pacific Northwest and Alaska for over 60 years as the authorized distributor of Cummins products and services. About 50 percent of Cummins Northwest's Anchorage employees are graduates of UAA's Transportation and Power program. Cummins Northwest also does a lot of training in Alaska and many of the training courses are held on UAA's campus.

"Cummins Northwest and UAA's Transportation and Power Division have a long, friendly relationship," said Stephen Rude, operations manager for Cummins Northwest, and Transportation and Power Division advisory board member. "We feel that it's important to support UAA because so many of our employees graduated from the program and Cummins Northwest's corporate philosophy includes giving back to the community. I graduated from a similar program many years ago and understand the importance of having the latest technology available for students to learn from. UAA is a fine institution."

The Automotive and Diesel Technology program is currently updating its diesel engine maintenance curriculum to meet 2011 National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation requirements. The new engines will help the program meet accreditation requirements.

The UAA Transportation and Power Division is home to the Automotive and Diesel Technology, and Welding and Nondestructive Testing programs. These programs are designed to equip students with knowledge and skills necessary to meet the needs of employers in the industry. All programs are based on applicable industry standards and lead to industry-based certifications.

For more information, contact Jennifer Mullins at (907) 786-6451 or To learn more about the UAA Transportation and Power Division, visit the Community and Technical College's Transportation and Power Web site.

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