D&A College blazes trail with new EV maintenance courses

Dundee & Angus College has opened a groundbreaking facility to train mechanics, first responders and others in the motor grade in the repair and maintenance of electric vehicles.
Caryn Gibson and Stephen Swinley from the college, and guests.Caryn Gibson and Stephen Swinley from the college, and guests.
Caryn Gibson and Stephen Swinley from the college, and guests.

The college has established the Electric Vehicle Training School at its Dundee campus in an effort to bridge the skills gap within the trade around EVs and to prevent local independent garages being forced out of the market.

In 2021, EVs made up 18.5% of all new car sales, according to research by heycar, but as the number of plug-in cars on the road grows, the number of places they can be maintained, repaired, and serviced remains low.

Stephen Swinley, head of curriculum and quality for engineering, said: “The motor industry is changing at a pace not seen for generations, and with the sale of new petrol and diesel cars to be banned at the end of the current decade, there has never been a more vitally-needed facility if independent garages and mechanics are to be able to retain a place in the market.

“However, our courses are not just designed for those working under the bonnet, whether you are a recovery driver, paramedic, firefighter, or even fleet driver, there are necessary skills required to deal with and work around electric vehicles to keep yourself safe, and prevent damage. Upcoming courses are already booking up, which is a clear sign of just how needed the facility is locally.”

The college offers three levels of courses ranging from the introductory ‘Awareness’ course to the Level 3, designed for those who need to repair and replace high voltage electrical systems within the vehicles, with a fourth course specifically for recovery drivers and emergency service personnel going live in the next academic year.

Councillor John Alexander, Dundee City Council leader, who attended the opening, said: “Dundee has been a trailblazer, and international award winner, for its work on the introduction of EV infrastructure.

"We know the climate emergency requires a variety of measures to mitigate our impact, electrification of vehicles is one of those. As we see demand for EVs increase, we need to ensure we have the skills and technology to support that increase. That is why a facility like this is vital, not only in staying ahead of the curve but by acting as a blueprint."

The courses are held at various times each month at Robert Lawson and Sons, and can be booked online at the college’s website, however a limited amount of funding is available for small and medium businesses which can be accessed by contacting the college directly.

For more information, contact the college’s Business Partnerships Team on 01241 432 724 or email [email protected].​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

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