Nearly half a million school buses drive 4.3 billion miles each year, all while maintaining a safety record unequalled in the transportation industry. That's quite a feat, considering school buses constitute the largest transit program in the United States. Because Thomas Built Buses knows what it takes to keep school buses rolling along safely, efficiently and reliably, it offers the Thomas Built Institute to enhance bus technician skills and complement school bus maintenance programs.
"We know how tough it is to keep up with ever-changing technology, EPA standards and safety regulations," said Mike Stotler, service education manager for Thomas Built Buses. "The annual Thomas Built Institute has become a very popular opportunity for school bus technicians to get hands-on training and a factory-certified curriculum in small classes, all in less than a week's time."
Participating technicians select the track they want and receive 28 credit hours of continuing education.
"It's the best training I've been to in 26 years," said Duane Chapman, fleet coordinator for 72 vehicles in the school district of Shawnee Heights, Kan. "Thomas Built Buses' hands-on training helped me learn faster ways to keep the buses running smoothly."
The 2013 institute curriculum includes:
- 2013 Emissions System
- Advanced Electrical
A choice of one of the following tracks:
- Type C: Multiplex, Service Link and Troubleshooting
- Type D: Electrical and Fan Drive
- Coolant, Maintenance and Cost Savings
- Utilizing Websites, Resources and Wire Diagrams
- Factory Tours
The 2013 Thomas Built Institute will be held May 7-10 in Greensboro, N.C. A second session will be held in conjunction with the STN Expo in Reno, Nev., July 23-26. To register, visit www.thomasbus.com. Early enrollment is recommended, as registration is limited to 100 participants to ensure small classes and personal attention. The cost is $325 and includes lunch and ground transportation.