BMW of North America visited the Center for Automotive Technology at NEIT’s Access Road campus on Thursday, August 7, 2014, to speak with more than 75 students about the BMW STEP program for technicians. Charles Klasman, from the BMW Headquarters in Woodcliff Lake, NJ, along with Charlie Antoniou, Service Manager of BMW of Shrewsbury, MA, presented three sessions regarding job opportunities and career paths that BMW has to offer NEIT graduates. BMW recruits automotive and collision repair graduates to work in its dealerships throughout the country and has been a longtime employer with NEIT. Many NEIT graduates have established careers as BMW Master Technicians.
Michael Isabella, Assistant Professor, Automotive Technology, along with Dr. Robin Schutt, Assistant Provost, developed an innovative program involving Special Olympics Rhode Island, and NEIT’s Automotive Technology department, based on a similar program Mike initiated while employed at West Bay Vocational (now Coventry Career Center.) Robin has been a dedicated volunteer for Special Olympics for four years serving in various capacities including Excelsior for the 2013 Penquin Plunge. Through their concerted efforts, a winning program was created at New England Tech.
With the help of volunteer automotive students, faculty and staff, twelve Special Olympians will visit NEIT’s Center for Automotive Technology for six weeks. In two hour sessions, one day per week, the Olympians will learn basic automotive skills that include car maintenance such as washing and vacuuming, along with basic lighting and safety checks.
Special thanks to students Tom Rawlinson, Joe Zing, Zack Casper, Mike Hogan, Wayne Turley Jr., Daniel Champagne, and Jake Gelacek along with faculty and staff members Herb Gowdey, Derek Martel, Norm Messinger, Dan Perry and Donald Champigny, Sr., for sharing their time and talent with the Special Olympians and giving back to our community.