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All programs in the Transportation Pathway at Pickens Technical College prepare you for a career working on vehicles of varying types. But, in addition to the valuable skills you’re learning under the hood, you’re also getting the experience and wisdom you’ll need to get a job in the industry and rise quickly. The job-finding aspect of Pickens’ courses adds immense value to the skills and learning you’re doing in the classroom.

One of the many advantages of the Automotive Technology program at Pickens is instructors Rolf Werner and Ed Martin’s obsession with getting you ready to ace all ASE certification tests. Specifically, the AT program has been focused on the Automotive Service Technician, Maintenance and Light Repair, NATEF Automotive Service Technician, and NATEF Master Automotive Service Technician certificates for its students.

But, NATEF hasn’t existed for over a year, so what changes have already occurred at the professional level, and how will the industry shift with a new educational and certification organization around?

The ASE Education Foundation

Back in February of 2018, the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF) and the Automotive Youth Educational Services (AYES) combined to form the ASE Educational Foundation. NATEF was recognized as an elite certification organization that normally certifies expensive automotive educational programs for instruction. Pickens managed to earn its program NATEF certification anyway.

The new organization then set out to concentrate on four key areas: accrediting AT service training programs at high schools and post-secondary educational institutions, supporting AT instructors, building relationships between employers and AT students while connecting them with educational institutions, and philanthropic outreach in the automotive service sector.

Its primary goal is still to maintain a quality pipeline of talented automotive service technicians entering the job market and building better value for the automotive industry in the United States.

New Leadership

Obviously, the ASE Educational Foundation is managed by the National Institute for Automotive Excellence, which, last month, promoted former senior vice president Mike Coley to the president of the ASE Educational Foundation.

Coley comes from the ASE Test Development department and has worked for the ASE for twenty years. He is a former automotive technology teacher at a community college as well.

“These changes play to the strengths of our staff. Mike brings a wealth of knowledge and operational experience to the Foundation position,” ASE President and CEO Tim Zilke said in January.

Coley’s promotion hints at the ASE Educational Foundation recommitting to the accreditation processes and testing standards aimed at pushing the most talented automotive technicians into the job market where they can thrive.

What’s Next

The newly reorganized, renamed, and re-prioritized ASE Educational Foundation will still be the gold standard for automotive technicians’ training and education. Pickens’ training in accordance with the ASE Educational Foundation these days will continue to put you at the top of the candidate pack when you graduate.