OREM, Utah (News4Utah) – Revving up for a tech-focused 2018, Gov. Gary Herbert (R) Utah, announced an expansion of technically-based programs for three Utah County school districts.
The Diesel Pathway Program will now be expanded to Alpine, Provo and Nebo school districts. The program is similar to aerospace and information technology initiatives recently started by the state. This program aims to help students learn how to create cleaner, more efficient Diesel engine products – which stakeholders say will eventually help Utah’s employment numbers and its declining air quality.
“Who knows what somebody’s going to invent? People are working on it now, so I expect we will only have improvement, and who knows what revolutionary new idea will come out of these technical colleges?,” said Gov. Herbert.
Students from Mountainland Technical College were at Clyde Companies in Orem, hailing the expansion.
Clyde Companies owns Geneva Rock, and other Utah Diesel interests.
Many of the companies on hand, like Geneva Rock and Komatsu Equipment, were excited about the push for more students to pursue technical education.
“We need a lot of good technicians,” said Jim Slade, Salt Lake City Branch Manager at Komatsu Equipment Company. “Currently, we are down about 20 as a company.”
Other companies are also hurting for technically-educated employees.
Herbert called 2018 the “year for technical education in Utah” last week when he unveiled his $16.7 billion budget plan for fiscal year 2019. $9 billion of that budget is going to be invested in education in Utah.