Williston High School opened a new facility this year.
But in addition to the new building, the school is debuting new career technical programming-the type that you can't find just anywhere.
These students are ready to rev up their engines.
That's because this is the new diesel program at Williston High School-
And it's only the second high school diesel program offered in North Dakota.
Richard Lund, the program's director, taught at Williston State College for twenty-five years. After taking a short break, he decided it was time to get back in the classroom.
"They're eager to learn that knowledge that you present to them. And that's what I want to do mainly-is help them succeed in life with this particular profession," said Lund.
And there's a lot for the students to learn about the profession.
"Diesel is like any automotive but there's a lot more to it than people think. And it's actually pretty fun," said Carl Wallner, Diesel Student.
"It'll be a lot more fun once we get in the shop. More hands on work. It'll just be different than a regular class," added Logan Larsen.
Which could explain why Lund had more students interested in the program than available slots. The class has 15 students total-14 boys and one girl.
"It's different. And I've always been a little different. I've been encouraged because I'm a female to do it. There's not many," said senior Katie Matluck
In fact, instructor Lund says during those twenty-five years at Williston State College he had only ten female students in his class. But as the only female student in Williston High School's diesel program, Katie has some advice for women considering a career in the field.
"I want them to know they can do this. You don't have to work hard. You have to work smart."
And deciding to pursue a career in the diesel field could be considered smart. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects faster than average job growth for diesel technicians and mechanics over the next eight years.
Students in the Williston High School diesel program will soon have a technology lab as well. That lab will help them apply the skills they're learning in the classroom today so they'll be better prepared for the jobs of the future.
Williston High School's diesel program instructor is also in discussion with Williston State College to potentially offer college credit to students who complete the program.
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