GM Donates Five Diesel Pickup Trucks to GM ASEP

$211,000 donation represents the largest single contribution in program’s history

General Motors (GM) recently donated five 2019 diesel pickup trucks to the GM Automotive Service Educational Program, better known as GM ASEP, at Dakota County Technical College. The in-kind donation of approximately $211,000 represents the largest single contribution in the automotive program’s history.

Michael Berndt, president of Dakota County Technical College and Inver Hills Community College, welcomed the support from General Motors, one of the largest vehicle manufacturers and marketers in the world, with operations on six continents and total assets approaching $230 billion. Major GM automobile brands in the U.S. include Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC.

“GM ASEP at DCTC is an excellent example of the kind of robust and ongoing partnerships we want with industry,” President Berndt said. “We value employers who invest with us in our students with the goal to hire and continually develop workers with leading-edge skills.”

GM Diesel Pickup Donation

Click image above to watch video on DCTC Facebook

2019 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali   MSRP: $54,700

2019 GMC Sierra 1500 SLT   MSRP: $44,300

2019 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 RST   MSRP: $38,800

2019 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LT   MSRP: $36,900

2019 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LT   MSRP: $36,900

Faculty perspective: Mark Hickman

Mark Hickman is a GM ASEP instructor. Mark is an Automotive Service Excellence Master Certified Technician and former GM Instructor of the Year. In 2007, he was recognized as a GM World Class Master Technician, the ultimate honor awarded by the General Motors Service Technical College. Mark was also named DCTC Instructor of the Year in 2009. He was awarded the Minnesota State Award for Excellence in Teaching Award the following year. Mark began teaching at DCTC in 1988.

(second from left) Mark Hickman: Minnesota State Award for Excellence in Teaching

“At DCTC, we thank General Motors for their continued support of GM ASEP,” Mark said. “The recent donation of five new diesel trucks will further enhance the current fleet of GM ASEP training vehicles at our college. GM donated 216 pickup trucks to programs at colleges nationwide for a total contribution of $12 million.”

Mark related that the unprecedented donation gives GM ASEP a distinct advantage over most other automotive programs training their students on older, obsolete vehicles. DCTC students will train on vehicles featuring the most modern diesel, electronic and safety technology in the world.

“The automotive repair field is quickly transitioning from a mechanical field to a technology field,” Mark said. “Thus, the need for training vehicles with current technology is essential to help our students meet the needs of their dealerships and customers.”

The partnership our college has with General Motors has always been strong. However, the value this latest donation exceeds any donation I have seen or heard of in all my years of working with transportation programs.

These donations have the diesel drivetrains—that feature alone adds a tremendous value to our program of study. These trucks are not just utility vehicles. The technology in these vehicles will keep us as current as possible. Our instructors are already creating lab activities so our students can get up-to-date, relevant experiences on this new equipment.

Mike Opp, EdD
Vice President of Academic Affairs
Dakota County Technical College

Faculty perspective: Tim McCluskey

Tim McCluskey is also a GM ASEP instructor. Tim is a GM World Class Technician, one of only 1,241 nationwide. He is also an Automotive Service Excellence Master Certified Technician and an ASE Alternate Fuels Certified Technician. As an authority on General Motors vehicles, he has edited GM automatic transmission and brake books. Tim started teaching at DCTC in 1996.

Tim McCluskey

Tim McCluskey: Lunch Bag Intervention

Tim reported that the new GM trucks are equipped with 10-speed automatic transmissions that allow the trucks to deliver impressive fuel economy and outstanding power by always having the right gear ratio available.

“The pickup trucks donated by GM are powered by GM’s new Duramax 3.0L Diesel inline six cylinder engine,” Tim added. “That engine produces 277 horsepower, 460 pound-feet of torque and an EPA rating of 23 miles per gallon city and 33 MPG on the highway. Very impressive numbers!”

Tim noted that the engines are even more impressive when they are compared to the first GM Duramax engine, the 2001 GM 6.6 Liter LB7 V-8 Duramax turbo diesel engine.

“The 2001 engine produced 300 horsepower and 525 pounds feet of torque with over twice the displacement!” he said. “Technology is a wonderful thing!”

A large thank you to GM for continuing to show strong support for GM ASEP at DCTC. These trucks will be great tools for the students to learn new GM Diesel technology.

Jason Wetzel, MBA
Dean of Transportation, Construction and Manufacturing
Dakota County Technical College

More about GM ASEP at DCTC…

Through Dakota County Technical College’s unique collaboration with General Motors (GM) and ACDelco, GM ASEP trains highly skilled service technicians for GM dealers and ACDelco Professional Service Centers. GM ASEP labs are equipped with the latest GM technology, including vehicles, components, training aids and technical information. Trained to handle GM’S computer-oriented product line, GM ASEP technicians are prepared to keep pace with future technology.

GM ASEP graduates work as service technicians in General Motors dealerships, including Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC, or at an ACDelco Professional Service Center. According to Minnesota State CAREERwise, 11,830 workers are employed in Minnesota in this large career. Demand for automotive service technicians and mechanics is currently in very high demand.

“There will be a need for about 14,318 new Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics to meet market demand between 2018–2028,” CAREERwise reports. “This includes the demand due to replacement (workers leaving the occupation or retiring) as well as growth.

The General Motors Automotive Service Education Program is accredited by the National Automotive Technician Education Foundation (NATEF).

Learn more about GM ASEP at DCTC by contacting:

Mark Hickman
GM ASEP Faculty

Timothy McCluskey
GM ASEP Faculty

(left to right) GM ASEP Instructor Tim McCluskey, President Michael Berndt, GM ASEP Instructor Mark Hickman, Dean Jason Wetzel, Vice President Mike Opp