Donation to VIU Automotive Program Enhances Student Learning

Members of the New Car Dealers Association of BC donated a $7,180 tire changer to VIU's automotive technician program. Left to right: Daryl Pushor, VIU Automotive Service Technician instructor; Glynis Steen, Associate Dean of Trades & Applied Technology, and members of the New Car Dealers Association of BC including John Chessman, John Wynia and Marnie Carter.

March 4, 2015 - 2:15pm

Students in Vancouver Island University’s (VIU) Automotive Service Technician program are practicing their skills on a new state-of-the-art tire changer thanks to a generous donation by the New Car Dealers Association of BC.

“It was a unanimous decision by the Board to donate the $7,180 John Bean tire changer to VIU,” says John Wynia, Chairman of the Board for New Car Dealers Association of BC.

“We have a vested interest in supporting the education stream of future mechanics,” said Wynia. “Students will eventually find jobs in the industry as apprentices, and some are already working as second, third or fourth year apprentices. Our goal is to ensure there are quality mechanics in industry. A big part of their training is the opportunity to practice on modern, industry standard equipment and machines. We’re happy to help make that happen.”

Daryl Pushor, an instructor in VIU’s automotive program, says the donation “is greatly appreciated.”

“The new tire changer replaces a piece of equipment that broke recently and was too expensive to repair,” he says. “With costs going up all the time, our program depends on industry support. It’s important that we have modern equipment available in our shops to guarantee that students get the training they need and are ready for employment.”

VIU’s Automotive Service Technician Program provides a ten-month Foundation (pre- apprenticeship) training program for 36 students per year.

High school students are eligible to apply through the VIU’s Dual Credit program operated with school districts in Nanaimo-Ladysmith and Parksville-Qualicum.

Levels one to four apprentice training is also available, and VIU typically runs five classes per year with approximately 80 students in each class.

“Our training philosophy involves keeping students focused directly on skills needed in the workplace,” says Pushor.

“We are one of the few training centres in BC where most of the in-the-shop training is carried out on customer-owned vehicles. This means our students experience realistic breakdown situations and follow the same standards and procedures that are in use industry-wide.

“To prepare students for the workplace we need to provide them with experience on the everyday workhorse equipment that they will encounter as apprentices out in the field.”

Pushor adds that there’s a growing demand for trained mechanics throughout BC.

The donation of the tire changer was arranged through VIU’s Advancement and Alumni Relations Office. For more information, go to



Janina Stajic, Manager, Vancouver Island University 

P: 250.740.6288 E: Twitter: @VIUNews

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