Automotive Career Takes A Turn

Corey Plummer

Corey Plummer

Corey Plummer, a 2010 graduate of NEIT’s Associate in Science degree program in Advanced Automotive Technology, always knew he wanted to work with cars. He started his career as an automotive technician, but he also realized that the degree he earned at New England Tech was loaded with options. With a strong automotive foundation under his belt, he decided to explore the field of insurance adjusting. Corey is now employed by Geico as an auto damage adjuster and is thriving in his new-found career. Here’s what Corey would like to share with NEIT readers.

What made you decide to attend NEIT? 

I learned about New England Tech’s Automotive Technology program through a few technicians who worked at the same dealership where I was detailing cars at the time. I decided to come down and check out the program, and soon thereafter, decided it was the perfect place to come and develop my skills! 

How did you choose your program? 

The Admissions officers at New England Tech were very helpful in directing me toward the right program, and although I am often dealing with auto body shops in my current position, I am glad that I chose Automotive Technology because it gave me a lot of priceless knowledge and experience that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.  

What did you do to get started with your career? 

I began applying to various car dealerships that I was somewhat familiar with. Within three weeks of completing my courses at NEIT, and interviewing relentlessly, I landed a job as an apprentice at a Land Rover dealership. I learned a lot in my time there. Within a few years, I moved on to a smaller independent Land Rover repair shop which also specialized in restorations. This type of work opened up another world of knowledge and unique skills for me. I soon realized that I wanted to continue working around cars but wanted to travel a slightly different path. A friend had informed me of an opening for an auto damage adjuster for Geico, and I was quick to apply. After a few weeks of interviewing, I landed the job as a trainee, and six months later, I was handling claims for one of the largest and most reputable insurance companies in the country! 

Tell us about your position. 

The greatest thing about my current position with Geico is that every single day is completely different. I am still working with all makes and models of vehicles, but I am dealing with them in a different way using the skills I learned at NEIT.  I deal with many customers and handle numerous obstacles and tasks as they arise. The efforts are well worth it, and I receive a lot of positive reinforcement and praise from management. The job itself is very autonomous, and although Geico is a very large corporation, there is a great amount of freedom to plan my own day. It is also very re-assuring to know that I have such a large company to support the decisions I make in dealing with customers. The opportunities are endless with a company that regularly offers employment in all 50 states. 

What do you feel ultimately prepared you for your position? 

The amount of time that was dedicated to learning about various automotive technologies at NEIT is one of the largest contributing factors to my success with my current and previous positions. I also feel that I gained an abundance of useful experience working for both large and small dealerships which really shaped who I was and what I wanted to become.  

Do you have any advice for graduates who are just beginning their job search? 

My only advice would be to follow your instincts and get into a field that feels natural and right for you. If you choose a field that you enjoy working in, many more opportunities will open up down the road like they did for me.  

What can current students do to better prepare themselves for jobs in this field? 

One of the biggest areas that I needed to improve upon when I started this career was organization. It took a while for me to figure out what I needed to do in order to organize my day, but I believe that is one of the most important factors of being an adjuster. With customers, body shops, and employees from the company calling throughout the day, it is essential to be able to handle all of their issues and prioritize what needs to be done.

Automotive Competition Revs Up

Pictured from left is Craig Stay, Snap-On Tools Account Manager with 1st Place  winners from Davies Career and Technical Center Savannah Monteiro and Jordan Vieira; Herb Gowdey, NEIT Automotive Instructor; and Bill Murphy, Automotive Teacher.

Pictured from left is Craig Stay, Snap-On Tools Account Manager with 1st Place winners from Davies Career and Technical Center Savannah Monteiro and Jordan Vieira; Herb Gowdey, NEIT Automotive Instructor; and Bill Murphy, Automotive Teacher.

The annual Ocean State Automotive Contest, hosted by New England Tech automotive faculty in cooperation with the RI Automobile Dealers Association, provides an opportunity for high school seniors to demonstrate their automotive technical abilities.

Students must work at various stations to complete assigned tasks or to troubleshoot technical “bugs” that have been planted in the vehicles. The workstations include braking systems, steering and suspension systems, electrical and electronics systems, heating and air conditioning, engine repair, parts identification and engine performance.

Teams of two high school seniors from various Rhode Island high schools and career and technical centers had ten minutes to complete each station.

The winning teams received prizes ranging from Snap-on tools to NEIT scholarships.

The first place winners were awarded a one year tuition scholarship, second place winners received a $1,500 tuition scholarship, and the third place winners earned a $1,000 tuition scholarship. The winning teams will represent Rhode Island at the National Automotive Dealers Competition in New York on April 22-23, 2014. Congratulations to these outstanding students.

Pictured from left is Craig Stay, Snap-On Tools Account Manager with 2nd Place Winners from Warwick Career and Technical Center student William Matorelli; Herb Gowdey, NEIT Automotive Instructor; student Zachery Azeredo; and Bill Cilli, Automotive Teacher.

Pictured from left is Craig Stay, Snap-On Tools Account Manager with 2nd Place Winners from Warwick Career and Technical Center student William Matorelli; Herb Gowdey, NEIT Automotive Instructor; student Zachery Azeredo; and Bill Cilli, Automotive Teacher.

Pictured is Craig Stay, Snap-On Tools Account Manager with 3rd Place Winners from East Providence Career and Technical Center student Devon Bradley; Joe Barroso, Automotive Teacher; student Noel Fournier; and Herb Gowdey, NEIT Automotive Instructor.

Pictured is Craig Stay, Snap-On Tools Account Manager with 3rd Place Winners from East Providence Career and Technical Center student Devon Bradley; Joe Barroso, Automotive Teacher; student Noel Fournier; and Herb
Gowdey, NEIT Automotive Instructor.

Tech News || Winter 2014

The Winter 2014 issue of Tech News is now available!

In this issue we’re featuring our 3D Printing program, our recent SAMI graduates, and some great career news from an Advanced Automotive Technology graduate!

Click here to read the Winter 2014 issue of Tech News

TN14

 

 

Maggie Finds Happiness With Automotive Repair Technology At New England Tech

 

New England Tech is a premier automotive schoolcontact our admissions department for tuition and course information 401-467-7744  #automotiveschool #neit #rhodeisland

New England Tech Automotive School Grad from Bermuda Always Loved Cars

Boys often dream of cars but the dream has become a reality for one young mechanic.

By: Jonathan Bell | The Royal Gazette

New England Tech - leading automotive schools in Rhode Island

New England Tech grad Andre Smith -Bermuda

Andre Smith, 21, earned a spot as an apprentice mechanic with Rayclan Ltd and hasn’t looked back.

“Andre’s had to prove himself from the bottom of the barrel,” said company manager Sharon Davis.

The Pembroke auto dealership and repair shop gambles on hiring and helping to train promising young Bermudians, in the hope that they’ll stick with it.

Not everyone has what it takes, she warned. The apprenticeship programme is anything but an easy ride.

Explained Ms Davis: “While our model may seem a long, drawn out one, spreading over almost four years of on-the-job training and classroom work, it separates the young people with not only the interest but the willingness to put in the time and effort for success, from those who may only have a passing interest and who aren’t prepared for the long haul.”

Rayclan co-owner Daniel Greenslade puts it a little differently: “A lot of times we get boys whose mothers call us up asking for a job.

“Right off the bat, that’s a bad sign — they need to have the gumption to come in and say, ‘This is what I’m doing, this is where I’m going’.”

Andre graduated from Mount St Agnes Academy four years ago and knew he wanted to work with cars.

“I always loved cars,” Andre said. “I had all the Hot Wheels cars when I was young. I would draw cars and watch all the car movies.

“I was in school asking myself what I could do that related to cars. Being a mechanic was one option for the field.”

He learned of Rayclan through “word of mouth” and ended up shadowing Gil Santos, described by Ms Davis as “a very demanding, tough-as-nails senior mechanic”.

Andre decided to put off college courses and focus on accruing experience. It turned into 18 months’ work.

“A lot of people come into this trade thinking it’s going to be easy or fun,” said Andre. “I wanted to make sure it was something I really wanted to do and to make sure I was good at it as well.

“This trade isn’t meant for everybody. I like waking up in the morning and liking what I do.

“It can be tough. I’ve got a car right now where the indicators aren’t working.

“I just replaced the fuses, but they came back with the same problem. There’s something making the fuses blow.

“So I have to make diagnostic steps and figure out what. I like that kind of problem-solving.”

The company was impressed enough to help pay for his associates degree at the New England School of Technology in 2010.

“The experience helped a lot,” recalled Andre. “Half the things I already knew or knew the gist of. That’s where I learned how it worked, and got the general courses like physics.

“I’d always wondered how I was going to need things like physics and algebra. When it was applied to the field, I could see it.”

Mentor mechanic Mr Santos has since moved on.

His replacement is Jonathan Davis, another company apprentice who went through the New England Institute of Technology and brought the skills back home.

Andre is now a junior mechanic with the company.

“It’s like being a car doctor,” he said. “When you diagnose problems you’ve got to do it correctly — or they’ll be back.

“Or sometimes a car comes in and we have to tell the customer that the problem hasn’t happened yet and they might have to bring it back. It can be hard but there’s always something new.”

Asked if the glamour had worn off when it came to getting covered in oil, Andre laughed.

“Everybody complains that it’s a dirty job. And it is. But that all depends on how you work. I wash up regularly. You can work clean.”

Geothermal System Installed at New England Tech’s Automotive School

Wind turbine at NEIT automotive school - Rhode Island

New England Tech Automotive School

New England Institute of Technology continues to invest in its energy future with the installation of a new geothermal system in its automotive school (Center for Automotive Technology) – Access Road campus.

The new system utilizes both energy recovery and geothermal technologies to supply pre-heated and pre-cooled fresh air throughout the facility.

By using the combination of  two green technologies,  energy recovery and geothermal, it is estimated that the auto school will use 60% less electricity and gas to heat and cool the automotive lab.

Installation of the geothermal system is part of New England Tech’s campus-wide green initiative.

To be certain our students are well-versed on various renewable and sustainable energy sources such as wind power, hydro power, fuel cells, tidal power, solar hot water, and geothermal,  these topics have been incorporated into the Electrical, Plumbing, Heating, and Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Technology programs. Then our students have the opportunity to complete hands-on exercises and examine the components, installation, environmental impact, maintenance, practicality, site sustainability, and local regulations as they relate to renewable and sustainable energy sources.

For additional information on our Building Technologies programs – contact our admissions department 401-467-7744

 

New England Tech Automotive School High Performance Professor Awarded

Derek Martel Teaching Automotive High Performance Class at New England Tech.NEIT Automotive School – High Performance Faculty Member, Derke Martel, receives national recognition

Derek Martel, Assistant Professor in New England Tech’s Transportation Technology department (the automotive school), couldn’t be happier.  The New England Tech college community couldn’t be prouder either.

Derek receives national recognition

Derek is the recipient of the MAHLE Champion Technician Award recognizing him as the top high performance engine technician in the country.
His nomination by Professor Christopher Bannister in New England Tech’s Transportation Technology program was chosen from all those received by MAHLE Clevite.  The other nominees were all very qualified as well, yet Derek was voted as the most qualified to be named “Champion.”  In addition to this honor, Derek and his wife will be traveling to Las Vegas to participate in MAHLE’s Champion’s Week and receive his award.MAHLE Celvite, Inc., in Ann Arbor, Michigan.  MAHLE is an aftermarket supplier of more than 100,000 automotive products that are designed and manufactured to the same strict quality standards used for the large automotive brands. The company has 24 international locations including six sales offices and employs nearly 1,500 employees.

READ THE “PERFORMANCE BUSINESS” STORY

We congratulate Derek for this well-deserved honor – we are so fortunate to have such an outstanding faculty member at New England Tech’s Automotive School!