The Career Education Division at Arkansas State University-Beebe recently received a grant from the Arkansas Department of Higher Education.

The Perkins Post-Secondary Reserve funds were awarded toward the purchase of a Cascadia Truck Simulator valued at $19,750 for the Diesel Technology program located on the ASU-Beebe Searcy campus.

Students enrolled in the Diesel Technology program receive instruction and training in the repair and maintenance of heavy equipment which includes: farm equipment, industrial equipment, heavy-duty trucks, buses and tractors. Whether the technician works for a transport company, bus line or self-employed, the program can help prepare the student for the diesel technology field.

Additionally, Maverick Trucking of Little Rock donated a diesel trailer trainer to interface with the Cascadia truck simulator. The trainer will be used to teach current standard brake systems and suspension systems used on modern heavy duty trucks. The students will be able to learn about safe lifting and handling of over-sized wide base tires and wheels, along with proper wheel-end bearing run-out and set-up in a controlled environment.

“These donations will directly benefit our students in the classroom as they will be able to engage in hands-on learning that is needed in today’s diesel technology industry,” said Dr. Suzanne Bailey, dean of Career Education.

The Diesel Technology program offers a one-year Technical Certificate and Certificate of Proficiency, as well as a two-year Associate of Applied Science in General Technology degree. The Diesel Technology program is one of only two National Automotive Technician Education Foundation (NATEF) accredited programs in Arkansas.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, a 9.25% nationwide employment growth is expected in the diesel technology industry by 2026. In May 2016, the national median annual wage for diesel service technicians and mechanics was $45,170.

ADHE Perkins received 57 requests from 20 institutions, totaling $1.4 million, with 11 requests selected for funding from the Program Year 2016-17 Perkins Post-Secondary Reserve Funds.

The Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act of 2006 (Perkins IV) provides federal assistance to secondary, postsecondary and adult technical education programs. This federal legislation seeks to ensure that states are economically competitive by helping learners develop the academic and occupational skills, which are necessary to work in a technically advanced society, while doing so in congruence with the workplace needs, as well as encouraging equitable participation in career and technical education (CTE) by all segments of the population.

For more information about ASU-Beebe or programs offered, call (501) 882-3600, or visit the website at