OREANDA-NEWS. The Ryder Charitable Foundation, which directs charitable giving and support on behalf of Ryder System, Inc. (NYSE: R), in four strategic pillars – expertise, innovation, safety, and community collaboration – today announced the 17 scholarship winners of the 2016 SkillsUSA and Ryder Diesel scholarship. Ryder recently provided a $50,000 donation to SkillsUSA, a nonprofit partnership of students, instructors, and industry that ensures America has the skilled workforce it needs to stay competitive. The gift, which is a part of Ryder’s giving strategy supporting expertise, will provide student scholarships to help educate the next generation of commercial vehicle technicians. Another portion of the funds has been designated for enhanced diesel technology labs (classrooms).

“Ryder is happy to make diesel equipment technology training more affordable for aspiring technicians,” said Patrick Pendergast, Group Director of Recruiting Services, Ryder. “The men and women we invest in today will transform into the technicians of tomorrow, with the power to make an impact on the future of America’s commercial vehicle transportation industry.”

The 17 scholarship recipients are as follows:

  • Stephen Allen, Orange Technical College-Mid Florida Campus (Orlando, Fla.)
  • Cory Bettenhausen, Minnesota State Community and Technical College (Fergus Falls, Minn.)
  • Kheigan Bott, Lewis-Clark State College (Lewiston, Idaho)
  • Thomas Distelcamp, Mercer County Technical School (Trenton, N.J.)
  • Elizabeth Driml, College of Western Idaho (Nampa, Idaho)
  • Alexander Fischer, Niagara Career and Technical Education Center (Medina, N.Y.)
  • Emmett Fox, CPAVTS (Mechanicsburg, Penn.)
  • Matt Gardner, Automotive Training Center (Warminster, Pa.)
  • Jeremy Hartman, Minnesota State Community and Technical College (Fergus Falls, Minn.)
  • Nicholas Lierz, North Central KS Technical College (Beloit, Kan.)
  • Krysten Linville, Central Lakes College (Brainerd, Minn.)
  • John Lunde, Minnesota State Community and Technical College (Fergus Falls, Minn.)
  • Charlee Sheidy, Sollers Point Technical High School (Dundalk, Md.)
  • Steve Silva, College of Western Idaho (Nampa, Idaho)
  • Austin Sparks, Milwaukie High School (Milwaukie, Ore.)
  • Lane Trissel, Rainier High School (Rainier, Wash.)
  • Devon Werle, Fountain Fort Carson High School (Fountain, Colo.)

The scholarship winners, who will receive $1,000 each, are SkillsUSA members and students continuing their education in Diesel Equipment Technology. SkillsUSA has more than 2,600 student members – 998 college/postsecondary and 3,635 high school members – who are enrolled in Diesel Equipment Technology in 258 classroom labs across the United States. Those interested in learning more about the scholarship, can visit www.skillsusa.org/ryder-scholarship-grant-opportunities/.

“There is a growing shortage of skilled diesel technicians and it is estimated we will need 200,000 trained technicians over the next decade to keep up with the demand,” said Tim Lawrence, SkillsUSA executive director. “These are good paying jobs that already exist, but we must train students to fill them. Ryder’s grant to support 17 students will equip more students with the diesel skills we need in America. These scholarships will help students to further their education in this much needed field of work and we are grateful to Ryder for their partnership and support.”

Ryder has the best technicians in the industry and values the importance of technical training for ensuring the quality maintenance of its more than 230,000 total vehicles managed, and a commitment to quality customer service for Ryder’s lease and maintenance customers. 

Ryder Charitable Foundation

Established in 1984, the Ryder Charitable Foundation demonstrates community and industry leadership and inspires trust by supporting causes that address needs in communities where Ryder does business in the United States. The Foundation proactively solicits proposals from and awards grants solely to IRS certified, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations whose goals align with Ryder’s core values in four strategic pillars – Expertise, Innovation, Safety, and Collaboration. T