The DeHavilland Blog

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Yet another great program

Jiffy Lube franchisees in Southern California issued the following press release yesterday:

September 27, 2005 08:55 AM US Eastern Timezone
Jiffy Lube Delivers ``Auto Care'' Class to Underserved High Schools across Southern California; Due to Statewide Budget Cuts in Vocational Training, Jiffy Lube Steps in with Free Classes

HOUSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sept. 27, 2005--The Southern California Franchisees of Auto Service Center leader Jiffy Lube International (
www.jiffylube.com) today announced it has launched a philanthropic program to bring Jiffy Lube's "Basics of Auto Care" classes to underserved high schools across Southern California. Comprising 10 distinct classes covering different aspects of auto function, the program is delivered free to schools in response to statewide budget cuts in vocational training and auto care classes in many public high schools. The interactive classes will present students the opportunity to learn about basic auto care, as well as various potential career paths within the industry.

Taught by longtime auto technicians, James McCaughley in the Los Angeles area and Louie Garcia in Oxnard, the Jiffy Lube "Basics of Auto Care" class will cover a wide range of topics, including: the fundamentals of the internal combustion engine, fuel, compression, ignition, air filter and fuel filter; oil changes, including proper disposal of spent engine oil; cooling system; transmission; suspension, steering, wheels and tires; brakes; and electrical. The class will also feature a day with Jiffy Lube professionals describing their jobs and how they became involved in working with cars, as well as a class dedicated to customizing, or "tricking out," autos.

"So many students these days are denied the opportunity to learn about automobiles and become exposed to possible careers within the industry, and Jiffy Lube is proud to step up and offer this kind of instruction to underserved schools around California," said John Kenyon, President of the LA Jiffy Lube Association of Franchisees. "Students taking Jiffy Lube's `Basics of Auto Care' class will come away with a broad knowledge base that will enable them to make smart choices when it comes to their own automobiles, as well as show them the kinds of careers that are available in the industry."

"My knowledge of auto care has been vital to my own success as a professional, and I'm very pleased to share my expertise with students in underserved neighborhoods around California," said McCaughley. "Students today often miss out on the opportunities I had, when `Auto Shop' classes were offered at basically every high school, and it's important to show teens the basics and how they can make a career out of it, as I have."

Jiffy Lube also offers several resources drivers can use to learn about how a car functions and what components need to be maintained. For example, at
www.jiffylube.com, drivers can find an animated "How Cars Work" tutorial. In about 30 minutes, the interactive tool provides a thorough overview of the critical parts of a car, what can go wrong with them, and how they should generally be maintained.

I've not seen the actual curriculum, but on the surface this is brilliant. Think about the key points of this program:
  • It's valuable to schools - auto work has been a mainstay of voc-ed programs, and was formerly covered prior to budget cuts
  • It introduces real-world skills - understanding the basics of auto care can certainly be considered as a life skill
  • It provides students with an engaging learning experience - students get some hands-on experience working on cars; the "tricking out" session is probably particularly fun
  • It introduces students to career opportunities - a workforce development angle that's great for students and great for the industry
  • It provides volunteer opportunities for employees - which not only can be rewarding, but also puts a human face on the company for hundreds - maybe thousands - of kids and families. It also sends a message to the entire employee base - we're proud of what we do, and proud to share it with the world
  • It reinforces brand positioning - Jiffy Lube is obviously the expert in auto care, or why would they be able to teach classes on it?

This program is win-win-win, with positives for students, Jiffy Lube, and the auto services industry - wonderful to see initiatives like this cropping up.

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