$100,000 Grant Funds Hartnell College, Ag Industry Partnership

Hartnell College has begun to train the first group of veteran students for careers in diesel mechanics through a partnership funded through a $100,000 grant from the Metallica Scholars Initiative.

On Aug. 30, students in an initial cohort of about seven began attending two days of in-person classes in preventive maintenance and steering and suspension systems at Hartnell’s Alisal Campus.

Hartnell College was selected from a competitive field of community colleges across the country to receive $100,000 for a partnership that will prepare Monterey County veterans for careers in Salinas Valley agriculture and place them in jobs.

Funded by Metallica’s All Within My Hands (AWMH) and led by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), the Metallica Scholars Initiative was designed to directly support students while also elevating the importance of career and technical education.

Hartnell College and its lead partners, the Grower-Shipper Association (GSA) of Central California and the Veterans Transition Center (VTC) of Monterey County, are working to expand participation to up to 20 veterans. 

Over the next year, participants will complete Hartnell courses while also receiving paid on-the-job training with GSA member companies that operate in the Salinas Valley. Each student also will receive a toolbox and basic tools worth $2,300.

In late September, the students will meet and interview with agricultural employers to find the best fit for three days a week of on-the-job training. Participating companies will include Taylor Farms, Tanimura & Antle, Automated Harvesting LLC, Dole Fresh Vegetables and Braga Fresh, and others may come on board in the future.

Learn more about diesel engine specialists here.
News and photo courtesy of Hartnell College. Pictured, instructor Marc DeHart reviews Hartnell’s online interface for their courses.