The schoolâ€™s credibility relies on finding even more jobs for its graduating students.
Right in the heart of Orange Blossom Trail in south Orange County, surrounded by car dealerships, sits a new kind of business. Mech Tech is a
brand-new technical school that promises to put people who complete the schoolâ€™s program to work.
manufacture, you donâ€™t control,â€ said school founder Edwin Colon.
Colon already operates seven trade schools in Puerto Rico. He transformed a former car dealership into the
eighth Mech Tech, an occupational university. Colon said he used great care in selecting a site for his first mainland United States school, ultimately settling on Central Florida.
â€œRight here in
Orlando, everything moves by trucks. Who fixes them? They need to be maintained, and they have to be repaired,â€ said Colon.
Right now, classes include auto mechanics, diesel work, racing mechanics and training in air conditioning and electrical work.
The goal of the school, according to Colon, is to stimulate the local economy and create more jobs.
â€œIn 25 years of
experience, I would say 90 percent of the beginners will work with someone, and in that period they will learn how to do their own business,â€ said Colon.
And with hundreds of thousands
of dollars worth of state-of-the-art tools.
â€œThis is a
Disneyland for automotive technicians,â€ said an instructor.
race car simulator will give mechanics the hands-on experience the school hopes will drive the economy in the right direction.
In order for the school to maintain its accreditation, it must find jobs for 70 percent of the graduating students.
Classes start at the end of this June. The school hopes to enroll 300 students