Benson Polytechnic High School Alumni Association

A short history of the diesel program at Benson Tech

by Brett Anderson, Diesel/Automotive Instructor

There is a 30+ year history of diesel being taught as part of the automotive major at Benson Tech. The program was established in the
mid-1980s. I was hired in 1994 as the diesel/automotive instructor
and inherited a well-established program.

In 2004, Freightliner Corporation presented Benson Tech with a large donation of then-current diesel engines that really gave our program a boost at that time.

Last spring, a former colleague of mine from Portland Community College, Dale Klier, who now works in the training department at Daimler Trucks, contacted me to see how Benson’s diesel program was going and asked if there was anything we could use. We talked about my desire to upgrade our engines and our semi-truck to more current

Dale was then able to arrange for the donation of a 2005 semitruck and 10 new diesel engines that include current technology  and perfect for the long-term viability of the diesel program at Benson.

With the addition of this latest donation from Daimler Trucks, Benson Tech now has a world- class high school diesel program. The timing of this could not be better since there are many high paying, heavy equipment/diesel technician jobs that are currently available and the future looks bright for this industry.

This article appears in our February 2015 newsletter (pdf)

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