Parkland College Automotive Program to Begin EV, Hybrid Training

Parkland College Automotive Program to Begin EV, Hybrid Training

Auto program purchases all-electric Ford for EV, hybrid training

Parkland College's automotive program has purchased a new Mustang Mach E electric SUV for students to study.

The Mach E, purchased from Shields Auto Center of Rantoul and funded by a Perkins grant, is a fully electric vehicle (EV) that students in the automotive program will use to gain hands-on experience with electric and hybrid automotives.

"A key component of Parkland's mission and programming is to provide our students with the tools they need for an evolving future, and our community partners with a skilled and up-to-date workforce," said David Charney, director of the Ford ASSET program. "This new investment will do both by preparing our students for the current and future needs of the industry."

Students in Parkland's Ford Automotive Student Service Education Training (ASSET) program will particularly benefit from the new purchase. Ford ASSET is a two-year Ford technical career entry pathway that allows students to earn the same Ford certifications a technician would receive at a Ford training center. Graduates can enter the workforce as entry-level service technicians with an associate's degree in automotive service technology.

With the purchase of the Mach E, ASSET students can now earn additional Ford certifications in hybrid and electric vehicles. Students will gain experience with the unique drive characteristics of a battery electric vehicle and hone their skills safely removing and replacing high voltage batteries. Along with the vehicle, students will also use new types of training aids that are based in virtual reality software. Training with electric and hybrid vehicles is not limited to students in the Ford ASSET program, however.

For more information about Parkland's automotive certifications and degree offerings, please visit or contact the department at 217/351-2481 or

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