Tidewater Community College’s Automotive Technology program got a boost this week thanks to Nissan North America.
Nissan donated 10 late-model vehicles to the college’s general automotive program to enhance student training. The donated vehicles include sedans, SUVs and even a 370Z sports car.
“We’re thrilled by this donation that includes a hybrid Pathfinder, a diesel Titan XD and eight other well-kept vehicles,” said Beno Rubin, pathway dean for Manufacturing and Transportation at the college. “These vehicles will enhance student learning and ensure they are prepared to enter the automotive repair industry.”
The 10 Nissan vehicles are welcome additions to the Regional Automotive Center’s fleet of vehicles that includes Toyotas, Hondas, Subarus, Fords, Jeeps and Chryslers.
“Today’s technicians are highly trained on computers, mechanics and problem-solving skills,” said Harry Brown, fixed operations manager for Nissan North America. “And with the extreme shortage of trained techs, we are grateful for the opportunity to supply these vehicles and assist in training the next generation of technicians.”
Stuart Mitcheison, TCC’s lead instructor for the general automotive program has been working as an automotive technician for three decades. He spent 23 years as a master technician for Nissan. In addition, for more than a decade he’s shared his knowledge with future technicians, first as a part-time instructor and now as a full-time faculty lead.
“This donation is a great boost for our general automotive program,” Mitcheison said. “With the variety of different vehicles and engines, these newer vehicles will greatly enhance the student’s experience at the college.”
Dan Bannister, owner of Bannister Nissan in Chesapeake and Norfolk said, “It’s awesome that Nissan is participating in this way. It’s phenomenal to be able to hire technicians trained on our vehicles by a master technician with decades of experience.”
TCC’s automotive technology program, accredited by the Automotive Service Excellence Education Foundation, prepares students for work in the field and provides updated training for those already working. Students learn general automotive repair, servicing and diagnostics.
“My favorite things about teaching are those aha moments when students put things together and just get it,” Mitcheison added.
TCC’s Regional Automotive Center is a 30,000-square-foot facility located at 600 Innovation Drive in Chesapeake. The center has nine classrooms and 15 instructional laboratories; a four-wheel chassis dynamometer, diagnostic scan tools, three alignment machines, and all of the necessary tools and equipment to deliver instruction. Students are trained on the latest equipment at the forefront of industry trends.
“We are thrilled to be able to continue to build a relationship with TCC to help our dealerships,” added Peter Rusin, district technical service manager with Nissan North America. “We see this as a win-win for all of us.”
To learn more about TCC’s Automotive Technology programs, email RAC@tcc.edu or call 757-822-5000.