Diesel Technology students get fired up for their futures
More than a dozen recruiters and company representatives spent a day talking to the Diesel Technology/Heavy Equipment students in Mike Schultz’s class at the Orleans Career and Technical Education Center.
Students spent their classroom time walking through the stations that featured such companies as Hunter Peterbilt, Milton CAT, Bobcat of Buffalo, Landpro Equipment, Monroe Tractor, Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority, New York State Department of Transportation, Regional Equipment, Inc., Empire Tractor, Relco Systems, Reid Petroleum, Trucking Association of New York, Henrich Chevrolet and NAPA.
“It was a great experience for my classes to be able to talk to these representatives,” says Schultz. “These are potential employers for them and it gives them a chance to talk to them directly and do some informal interviewing. It is good for them to see the career opportunities that are available to them and what kind of benefit packages they offer.”
Samuel Kusiniski, service manager for Milton CAT, said the career fair was excellent event.
“I like doing this kind of stuff. Mr. Schultz has given his students a great experience having all this representation here. As a perspective employer it is good for us to see what kind of skills the students have and how they interview.”
Chris Birner, service director of Heinrich Chevrolet, added that there was a lot of good interaction with the students “and many of them have great qualifications.”
“There was a lot of talks about careers and what we are looking for to be part of our team,” Birner said. “We want them to have fun, but be safe and hard working. It is great that places like BOCES exist because the future is really skilled trades. It is what our economy needs.”
Joining Birner was Raymond Gorski, one of his employees and a graduate from the Diesel Technology/Heavy Equipment program.
“I graduated from here in 2019. Going to BOCES really made me grow up,” Gorski said. “Mr. Schultz taught us what we needed to know and pointed us in the right direction. My senior year, I capstoned at Heinrich and it was a great experience. It got me on track to where I wanted to be with my career. I ended up attending Monroe Community College and then Heinrich sent me through GMASEP (GM Automotive Service Education Program) which was amazing. They also provided me with great training and a great mentor.”
Schultz says he was very proud of how his students handled themselves.
“A lot of the people who were here told me how impressed they were with the students. They said they had been to a lot of schools and our students were some of most mature and well-mannered they had ever encountered,” Schultz said.
Schultz said that as an educator he found it rewarding to see that what is being taught in the classroom is giving students opportunities to learn job skills.
And then, he said, “events like this give them a chance to hone their interpersonal and interview skills as well,” Schultz said. “I am very grateful to the companies that participated at the event and gave the students such a positive experience as they start thinking of their future career plans.”
Julia Gaiser, customer support with LandPro Equipment, said the fair also helps businesses prepare for the future.
“The kids were very sweet and very polite. Many of them want to go right into the workforce after graduation,” Gaiser said. “It helps us to see what they want out of a career and helps us to align ourselves to what those needs are.”