When Navistar Inc. created its Pure Power Technologies affiliate more than a year ago, the company committed itself to investing in the South Carolina business community for a long time to come. Company officials this week discussed the many ways they’ve made good on that promise with investments in the present and future of South Carolina.
At a ceremony attended by local and state officials, company representatives said they have created more than 283 new jobs since January 2010 and plan to add more in the months ahead. In addition, Navistar launched plans to partner with Richland One School District to offer a program to equip high school students to be truck and diesel engine technicians.
“We’re proud to have added jobs here in South Carolina,” says Houman Kashanipour, president of Pure Power Technologies. “These aren’t just any jobs either. They are highly-skilled innovative roles that are designing and building the future of our industry.” To equip current and future Pure Power employees with required skills, Kashanipour explained the company has designed programs and made investments to train and develop talent.
The new education program, which represents an investment up to $450,000 by Navistar and its Navistar Foundation, will train sophomores, juniors and seniors at Richland One School District’s Heyward Career & Technology Center in Columbia, S.C., to become certified diesel engine technicians.
“Already, our employees here are contributing to the community in a meaningful way by supporting places like Palmetto Health and the Harvest Hope Food Bank,” says Eric Tech, Navistar Engine Group president. “Now, we are elevating that commitment by establishing a distinctive diesel technician training program that will prepare today’s high school students for tomorrow’s jobs.”
Successful graduates of the program are eligible to receive an annual scholarship from the Ernest E. Stinsa Jr. Scholarship Fund, designed to further promote the importance of higher education. Stinsa, a former Navistar employee, was the “godfather” of the program, shepherding it from concept to launch before passing away in December 2007.