July 30, 2012 12:00AM
Kieron Kohlmann came to Pitt State from Racine, Wis., to learn from three of the top automotive experts in the world. Kohlmann is preparing for the WorldSkills international automotive competition to be held in Germany in 2013. At PSU, Kohlmann worked under the close supervision of Scott Norman, Ron Downing, and Mike Elder. It is hard to imagine a team better able to get Kohlmann ready.
Norman, an automotive technology professor at PSU since 2007, is the U.S. technical delegate for WorldSkills. Downing has been on the PSU automotive technology faculty since 1996 and just recently stepped down as the U.S. expert for automotive technology and is a past judge for the competition. Mike Elder is the newest member of the faculty but has a long history in automotive technology education and is following Downing as the U.S. automotive technology expert.
As he worked to dismantle an engine in one of PSU’s automotive service labs, Kohlmann said he was learning a lot in his brief visit to Pittsburg.
“I’ve been interested in cars as long as I can remember,” said Kohlmann, who is a junior automotive engineering major at Ferris State University.
Norman said Kohlmann was selected to represent the U.S. in the WorldSkills competition from many excellent students.
“We look at all the winners,” Norman said. “We look at what they are doing now and whether they are continuing their education. They fill out a questionnaire and there are phone interviews.”
Late this year, Norman and Kohlmann will travel to Brazil where Kohlmann will compete in WorldSkills America.
“We think of that competition as training for the competition in Germany,” Norman said.