Last Tuesday, the College officially launched the PENSKE "Power UP" program. This program is aimed at Year 11 students who have chosen to study a Certificate II in Automotive. This year eleven (11) students have been invited to participate in this program which provides a new learning pathway for them, leveraging PENSKE's Detroit diesel engine, their knowledge of the industry (including the employment market) and St Edmund's training resources.

The program will deliver hands-on diesel technology training, introducing students to various training such as diagnostics, fuel and engine exhaust systems, maintenance and repair, industry certifications and career opportunities. Diesel Technicians are vital in keeping essential supply chains moving; nearly every good consumed in Australia is transported by trucks.

We were honoured to have Russell Koch (PENSKE Training Manager) and Jim Livermore (PENSKE Business Manager and SEC Old Boy) to launch the program officially.

PENSKE in the US has been running a similar program for a number of years with great success, so PENSKE Australia and New Zealand wanted to leverage this success. "We needed to find a school that not only had great facilities and an automotive program but also had the staff who were passionate about the industry and were dedicated in their teachings. This was what we found in St Edmund's College," said Russell Koch.

The students will have access to the same training that PENSKE Technicians have. This full support program will give the boys valuable factory training and experience working on some of the latest technologies that PENSKE has in their engines. Diesel Technicians not only work on the nuts and bolts, they now have to deal with a lot of computer software programs. The software in the PENSKE trucks runs three times more code than what is run in an F35 fighter jet.

The career opportunities available to the students are enormous, and Jim Livermore is a testament to this. After Jim left school here at Eddies, he completed a diesel automotive apprenticeship. As a diesel technician, he has been able to work all over the world, and his experience has allowed him to move his career into the management side, which has seen him become PENSKE Australia Chief Operating Officer and Director of PENSKE New Zealand. "I would never have thought that a Diesel apprenticeship would have taken me to where I am today", said Jim.

St Edmund's College Deputy Principal Peter Cook said, "We are incredibly proud of our automotive centre and are honoured to be teaming up with such a world-class leader as PENSKE Australia and New Zealand on this program.

To learn more about the PENSKE Power Up program, please get in touch with St Edmund's College Head of the Department, Dave Baxter.