Photo by Michael Roth, rer
Coastline4

Caterpillar Foundation Donates $300,000 to AED for Education of Technicians

April 22, 2020
The Caterpillar Foundation announced at Conexpo a $300,000 grant to The AED Foundation to fund scholarships to high schools interested in entering the heavy equipment industry.

The Caterpillar Foundation announced at Conexpo a $300,000 grant to The AED Foundation to fund scholarships to high schools interested in entering the heavy equipment industry.

The AED Foundation concurrently released its latest report compiled by the College of William & Mary entitled The Equipment Industry Technician Shortage: Reassessing Causes, Impacts and Policy Recommendation.”  

“First off, I’d like to thank the Caterpillar Foundation for their very generous grant to The AED Foundation,” said AED president and CEO Brian McGuire. “The grant is recognition of the great work The AED Foundation has been to close the skills gap and educate the next generation of skilled technicians for our industry. We are honored to have Caterpillar as a partner in this endeavor, and their assistance will go a long way toward fulfilling the action items detailed in the report we released today.”

Highlights of the report include:

-The need to fill up to 73,500 heavy equipment technicians over the next five years

-The equipment industry has a job opening rate three times higher than the national average

-Almost 90 percent of AED member dealerships have a job opening rate above the national average

-Among AED member respondents, 95 percent agree there is a skills gap in the industry and 89 percent report a shortage of workers in their company

The AED Foundation Chairman Jeffrey Scott, president of Intermountain Bobcat, said, “While this report highlights the challenges we face, it also presents recommendations to help us overcome those challenges, including; strengthening our recruitment strategy, furthering educational development initiatives, maximizing data collection and targeting to increase recruiting effectiveness and creating roles for older workers to leverage valuable knowledge. These recommendations dovetail nicely with The AED Foundation’s Vision 2024, which seeks to have: 100 accredited college programs, 50 recognized high school programs, and 10,000 skilled technicians entering the workforce by 2024.”

Here is a video of the announcement at Conexpo: https://youtu.be/IUKVNtLVYvQ

And here is a link to the report from the College of William and Mary:

http://aednet.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/AEDFResearchReport_FINAL.pdf