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Diesel Technology Program Gets Advanced Engine

Students in the CNM Diesel Equipment Technology program will be the first community college students in the nation to experience hands-on instruction with a new generation PACCAR MX engine. The 12.9 liter, 380-485 horsepower engine has been placed on long-term loan to CNM by Inland Kenworth in Albuquerque. Inland Kenworth is an award-winning truck dealership with a large network of locations in Western Canada and the Southwestern United States, offering truck sales, parts and repair services.

Aug 30, 2016

May 2012

Students in the CNM Diesel Equipment Technology program will be the first community college students in the nation to experience hands-on instruction with a new generation PACCAR MX engine. The 12.9 liter, 380-485 horsepower engine has been placed on long-term loan to CNM by Inland Kenworth in Albuquerque. Inland Kenworth is an award-winning truck dealership with a large network of locations in Western Canada and the Southwestern United States, offering truck sales, parts and repair services.

Delivery of the engine took place in early April at the CNM Advanced Technology Center, 4700 Alameda Blvd. NE. CNM instructors Jim Gore and Eric Leeman and numerous students attended the event to observe the same model engine running in a Kenworth heavy-duty truck. Once the engine is set up in the diesel program laboratory, students will be able to take it apart, handle and inspect parts, measure tolerances and put it back together again. CNM is arranging acquisition of approved tools from Kenworth.

The PACCAR MX engine is a step up in technology compared to most heavy-duty diesel engines on the road today. It combines advanced materials and unique design features to achieve weight reduction, increased power, greater reliability and improved fuel efficiency. Experience with this engine will better prepare CNM graduates for the challenges they will meet when they begin their careers.

Inland Kenworth has had a relationship with CNM since about 2000.

"I was a member of the CNM diesel program's advisory committee when I was with Ryder Truck, and stayed on after moving to Inland Kenworth," says Service Manager Frank DiBenedetti. "I brought (then-General Manager) Dave Douglas and then Mitch Casey (current GM) to the advisory group with me."

Getting an MX engine to CNM was a team effort. After seeing the new engine at an open house, Leeman and Gore contacted the dealership to see if CNM could buy one of the engines for training purposes. Inquiring with the company, Inland Kenworth Parts Manager Jeremy Thompson found out that there were no engines available for purchase. "They were putting them into trucks as fast as the factory could build them," he says. Changing tactics, the group decided to try to get a trainer engine.

"That's when I got involved," says Casey, "along with Vice President Greg Sternberg. We pitched the idea to the engine plant in Mississippi. They were surprised; no one had asked for a trainer before. They decided to loan an engine to the program for as long as it was needed, if CNM could pay the freight."

Cementing the cooperation between Inland Kenworth and CNM, Casey has volunteered to chair the SkillsUSA diesel competition that matches students from CNM and San Juan College, the two leading diesel training programs in the state. He and DiBenedetti will continue to be active on the advisory committee as well. The company already has a graduate of the CNM diesel program, Coby Stahl, working as a mechanic. "It's worked out really well," says DiBenedetti. "He's slotted for a week of MX training at the factory in Chillicothe, Ohio later this year. He's probably the youngest mechanic going. That's a $10,000 investment for us."

"We hope to continue adding CNM students," says Casey. "For me, it's just a partnership with CNM to find individuals in this field who want to work. Not just as techs, but also as parts guys, service writers, even truck sales. There are plenty of avenues."

Diesel Graduate Finds Career Success in Albuquerque

This month, on May 16, Coby Stahl will celebrate his first year as a professional diesel mechanic at Inland Kenworth in Albuquerque. Twelve months ago, he received his Certificate of Completion in Diesel Equipment Technology from CNM.

A native of Boerne in the hill country of Texas, Stahl and his wife came to New Mexico on the recommendation of his father-in-law. "I wanted to study auto mechanics, but in Texas there were mostly the commercial schools," he says. "I was looking for an education I wouldn't be paying off for 30 years.

"In high school, I was mostly a hands-on guy," he adds. "That's what I liked in the diesel program at CNM – smaller classes, more hands-on experience, not 100 kids in the class. There will always be times when you want to ask a question, but not in front of that many people."

Stahl says his experience with instructors Eric Leeman and Jim Gore prepared him thoroughly for his work at Inland Kenworth. "I can work on anything – some engines, more general mechanics on the OEM truck side," he says. "After I go to the Kenworth factory for training, I'll probably work more on MX engines."

"I'm pretty busy with work and family now," he adds, "but I took a course fall term, plus a few online classes. I'd like to get my AAS degree eventually."