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Stop complaining about the technician shortage…


By Elvis Hoffpauir C.O.O. MACS Worldwide

That was the principal message from Peter Meier, Director of Training at Motor Age. Peter, along with MACS Technical Advisor Ward Atkinson, joined moderator Steve Schaeber, Technical Editor and Manager of Service Training for MACS for a panel discussion on the subject during the recent MACS Training Event and Trade Show in Nashville.
Open almost any automotive trade publication over the span of the last 20 years, and you’re likely to find an article bemoaning the shortage of technicians. Such articles are usually long on “bemoaning” and short on solutions.
Peter made the point that it was time to quit waiting for someone or something to provide the solution, and for each shop owner to take the initiative in his or her own little corner of the world. “How many of you participate in your communities’ technical education programs? How many of you serve on advisory counsels for local training efforts?” Meier challenged. “It’s up to all of us in this room to address the need.”

Panelist Ward Atkinson introduced the MACS audience to the SAE Foundation and its mission to encourage and increase student achievement and participation in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) to build a STEM-fluent workforce. Funds raised by the SAE Foundation support SAE International’s award-winning A World In Motion® (AWIM) program, Collegiate Design SeriesTM (CDS), awards and scholarships. Atkinson is one of the many industry leaders who have served as formal mentors and industry volunteers for AWIM and CDS students.
SAE’s STEM education programs enable students to develop the 21st century skills needed to succeed in real-world work environments and connect classroom learning with real-life application. SAE’s STEM programs have reached more than 6 million students worldwide and engaged more than 30,000 STEM industry professionals as volunteers. SAE International is a global association comprised nearly 200,000 engineers, technical experts and volunteers to advance mobility knowledge and solutions for the benefit of humanity.

“Building a STEM-fluent workforce can only be accomplished when all of us work together toward a single goal—filling the pipeline with students who have the experience and competency the industry requires,” said Lori Gatmaitan, SAE Foundation Director. “With our local partners, we place industry volunteers in classrooms to empower teachers with the critical resources they need to impact tangible and systemic change. AWIM and CDS provide students in all communities a pathway to STEM careers.”
SAE is the only organization with a comprehensive continuum of “Pre-K through College” Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education programs.
By supporting these programs, along with SAE’s graduate and undergraduate scholarships and prestigious awards, the SAE Foundation continues to inspire the next generation of innovators.
Readers can learn more, by subscribing to the SAE Foundation quarterly newsletter at: (subscription form is located near the bottom of the page when you scroll down). Here is the general email and phone: (724) 772-8508,

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