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Keeping pace with demand: CSI bolsters diesel, heavy ag techs with new Transportation Technology Center

Posted at 4:32 PM, Apr 15, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-15 18:32:16-04

TWIN FALLS, Idaho — Lt. Governor Scott Bedke joined leaders of the College of Southern Idaho, Twin Falls School District, and the city for a groundbreaking of the new Transportation Technology Center at CSI. The facility will be the new home of the Heavy Equipment Ag Technology and Diesel Technology programs.

  • The $15 million Transportation Technology Center is funded by the Department of Public Works and the College of Southern Idaho.
  • Construction is expected to be completed in October 2025.
  • According to Lt. Gov Bedke, there are an estimated 600 open positions for diesel and heavy ag equipment technicians statewide.

(Below is the transcript from the broadcast story)

Dawsyn Ruffing is repairing a thousand-dollar part... As a student in CSI' hands-on Diesel Technology program, and diesel... Runs in the family.

"My grandpa was a technician for CAT, so he's pretty big into it. I just kind of wanted to take after him," Ruffing said.

Each of the 20 students is here for their own reasons.

"I've always had a love for diesel engines just the way the power they have, I just love them," Aldo Chavez said.

Chavez also knows diesel techs are pretty well paid. As he looks to level up his skill set .. working on a farm in Burley.

"I have some experience with farm equipment,” Chavez said. “Yes, we do drive trucks and tractors, and they're all fueled by diesel. So I just thought I should come over here and get some knowledge in diesel."

Instructor Dustin Holt keeps in touch with the students who have come through his class over the past 8 years.

"Out of all those classes there might be eight students that I haven't talked to since," Holt said.

Holt's Diesel technology program will soon have a new facility....

Lieutenant Governor Scott Bedke... Helping to break ground Monday for CSI’s new Transportation Technology Center ... Where holt's diesel students will soon see upgrades

"The layout of it is what's beneficial to us," Holt said.

The new facility will have a lift to raise the trucks off the ground so the whole class can get underneath to see what he's talking about

It will also make it easier to get the big rigs in and out, prepping workers to fill in-demand positions.

"There's 200- 300 technicians needed right now just in heavy equipment and diesel,” Holt said. “So that's what we're here to supply."