Questions we’re exploring

1. What is the impact of exposure to advanced technologies in automotive fields on high school students?

High school students in automotive technology don’t often have the opportunity to work with recently emerging technologies, such as electric motors. Given that the students of today will likely be working with this tech, we feel it is relevant and important to explore both how and why this hands-on work might impact their future careers.

2. How can student-led projects intersect with traditional curriculum in automotive technology programs?

Automotive tech curriculum typically follows a traditional set of concepts and skills. We wonder if adding an element of student choice-based projects could both augment the curriculum as well as integrate additional components relevant to industry.

3. What types of experiences can we co-design with students to give them exposure to the ‘real world’ work going on in automotive tech?

Getting students outside of the automotive workshop and into the real world may give them a host of benefits. Face-to-face time may highlight possible pathways to successful career paths and expand student understanding of the automotive industry. We are curious what types of experiences might spark student passion and interest.


Automotive Technology Research Overview

Throughout our work with automotive technology, we have been studying how the students respond to the subject, and seek to answer our three critical questions for the program.

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Program Updates

Connecting Students to Experts - Long Beach

One important component of our automotive program involves opportunities for novices and experts to intersect. We want students to have the opportunity to learn from professionals in fields of interest so the students can better understand what a career might look like in that area. Last year we took high school students from the Northshore Automotive program to Laguna Seca to learn from racing experts at an IMSA race and found it to be a valuable experience for both the students and teachers. This year, we are gearing up to take automotive students from two programs, the Northshore Automotive program and the Sno-Isle Tech Center to Long Beach, as well as their instructors to California for “The Streets of Long Beach” a Formula D racing event.

We surveyed students earlier this year to discover what types of automotive experiences would be most valuable for them to experience and learn about in more depth. They expressed a great deal of interest in the science and art of drift racing. We are currently finishing up the design of this year’s trip to Long Beach, but it will involve opportunities to intersect with a variety of racing professionals, in technical and related fields, as well as a tour of the renowned Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles.

We have already closed the application cycle and are in the process of interviewing interested high school students. We are really excited about this fantastic learning opportunity for the students and their teachers!

Breaking the Circuit

The Northshore Automotive Technology Program students and teacher have undertaken a tremendous challenge: To set a world record for an AC powered dragster. This is not a project typically undertaken by high school students, but under the guidance of their teacher, these students rose to the challenge. Breaking the Circuit tells the story of this ambitious group and their race car.

Electric Drag Racer in the Press

We are excited to share that the students at Bothell High School, their instructor Pat McCue, and the work they have done on the electric drag racer have been featured in the Seattle Times, Northwest News, and the Bothell Reporter!

Take a look at theSeattle Times, Northwest News, and Bothell Reporter to read more stories!

Laguna Seca and Canepa

To find out more about what drives student passion for auto, we brought a group of high school students who are enrolled in automotive programs to Laguna Seca and Canepa in California.

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Pat McCue of Northshore on Cars Yeah

Automotive teacher at Bothell High School appeared on the popular Cars Yeah podcast to talk about the student experience working on the car, partnering with foundry10, and his life as an auto teacher.

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Automotive Programs

Our automotive programs from 2015/2016 include an electric drag racer and some Model-T hot rods. You can check out more about the auto programs we ran last school year on our auto overview.

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