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St. Anne takes delivery of new EV

Switched On
Posted on 12/14/2023

Students at St. Anne Catholic High School are learning what the future of the automotive manufacturing sector will look like now that the school has its own Switch electric vehicle.

St. Anne became the first high school in Canada to receive one of the educational kit cars when it took delivery of the vehicle this fall, and held an event today to showcase how it’s being utilized. Over the course of each semester, senior students will assemble the car, learning the intricacies of electric vehicles at every step of the way. Once finished, they take it all apart so the next group of students can repeat the process during the following semester.

“With the impending opening of the new NextStar Energy battery plant, and all of the associated jobs there, and in related sectors, we felt this was the perfect time to start providing our students with the hands-on practical knowledge they’ll need to find employment in the electric vehicle industry,” said John Ulicny, Executive Superintendent at the WECDSB.

The kit comes with curriculum resources, however St. Anne Science Department Head Dawn Herdman has gone over and above, spending considerable time finding ways to incorporate lessons about the SWITCH car, and electric vehicles in general, into existing curriculum for all science students so that they will be well versed in the language of the industry.

“In the Grade 9 electricity unit, for instance, all of the exercises around calculating voltage, current and resistance are in the context of an electric vehicle,” she said. “In Grade 10 chemistry and biology, we’ve incorporated lessons around electro-chemistry, climate change and how the electric vehicle sector can be a part of the solution. It’s really all about getting them ready to move into the jobs of the future in this rapidly growing sector.”

NextStar Energy Chief Operating Officer Joe Araujo attended the event and said he was extremely impressed by the work the students at St. Anne were doing.

“This is a wonderful initiative, and it’s helping students acquire the knowledge and skills they’ll need to find meaningful employment in a truly transformative industry,” he said. “It’s very encouraging to see the school, and the board moving in this direction.”

Corey Shenken is the Special Projects Lead for Workforce Windsor-Essex and Chair of the Windsor-Essex Electric Vehicle Support Committee.

“One of our committee’s goals is to ensure the we have an available and accessible workforce to support the growing electric vehicle sector in Windsor-Essex, so knowing that we have high school students right here in our own backyard who are getting a head start on the training they’ll need to fill these jobs is great to see,” he said.

Check out this great video from today's media event:

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