VAA Virginia Asphalt Fall/Winter 2022

VAASPHALT.ORG 33 VECAT CONTINUES TO EVOLVE experienced is what I have observed students experience. Why would we want to replicate that model?” “We want students to learn, absorb and apply what they learn in these classes,” Clark continues. “Is the cost related to traveling higher with this format? Yes. Is the time away from the office longer? Absolutely! But what does quality, or the lack thereof, cost the individual or employer? In those bigger picture terms, the time and cost are negligible.” Bringing the Vision to Life While excellent training related to asphalt technologies were part of the long-term vision for VECAT, it has taken over seven years to launch these classes—and they are well worth the wait. GCC’s Ben Sherman says, “We wanted classes to be done right and not fast. We have learned about student needs during [the past seven years]. We have listened to employers and industry leaders. We have invested heavily in developing materials used in these two initial offerings. We have more courses planned, and we look forward to offering them through VECAT at Germanna Community College.” VECAT’s asphalt mix design and asphalt plant technician classes are open to everyone, however space will be limited to sixteen students per course. Both courses will be offered at the Fredericksburg Center for Advanced Technology. VECAT is also in discussions with Virginia Tech Transportation Institute to host the class in Blacksburg simultaneously, which would allow an additional eight students to participate. It is VECAT’s hope that such courses will serve as further tools for companies to train their employees and strengthen the industry. Those interested in learning more about these classes, the syllabi are available on GCC’s website. Costs of attendance will be adjusted for students and employers that meet FastForward and G3 criteria. Virginia Asphalt Association Director Mike Dudley teaches Asphalt Mix Design class