The AED Foundation Reaccredits Caterpillar Dealer Academy Technical Program at Florence–Darlington Technical College 

The AED Foundation congratulates the Caterpillar Dealer Academy – CAT ThinkBIG program at Florence-Darlington Technical College, Florence, SC, for gaining reaccreditation. Our thanks to Stephen Murphey, program director, and Jason Nelson, instructor, as well as others involved at the college for doing the heavy lifting and making this happen. 

In 1999, three Caterpillar Dealers, including Blanchard Machinery, Gregory Poole Equipment Company and Carolina Tractor, saw the need for highly trained service technicians. At that time a partnership was formed with Florence-Darlington Technical College. In 2000, the first class was formed; in 2002 the program graduated 12 students. To date, the program has graduated 262 well-qualified entry-level technicians.

The Caterpillar Dealer Academy is a cooperative two-year college level student technician education program that leads to an Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree with a major in Caterpillar service technology.  This partnership between sponsoring local Caterpillar dealers and Florence-Darlington Technical College builds the foundation for new technicians to service Caterpillar equipment with excellence and professionalism as they launch their careers within the Caterpillar dealer network.

The program:  
Requires complete general education classes that include English, Math, and Technical Writing.
Establishes excellent foundation level technical knowledge with engines, powertrain, hydraulic and electronic and HVAC systems.

Participates in internship experiences to establish working relationships with local CAT dealers.
Stephen Murphey and Jason Nelson indicate that “as we renew The AED Foundation Accreditation for another cycle, it is an important time to reflect by recognizing the successes and accomplishments of the last few years.  The AED Foundation is there to set a high standard and expectations for heavy equipment programs serving the industry. We consider The AED Foundation as a partner and it is rewarding to see growth in our program. This partnership is something we look forward to continuing in the future.”

The AED Foundation is proud of its affiliation with this outstanding diesel-equipment technology program at Florence-Darlington Technical College. If you are wondering where your next generation of qualified equipment technicians will come from, and are interested in working with your local technical college, contact Steve Johnson at The AED Foundation for more information. 

Program Contact: 
Florence-Darlington Technical College 
Accreditation: CAT Dealer Service Technology
Mr. Stephen Murphey, Director - Caterpillar Dealer Academy Manager
2715 West Lucas Street
Florence, SC  29502 
(843) 661-8187 

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