Wednesday, October 20, 2021

High School Students Win $59,000 in Scholarships at Universal Technical Institute’s Top Tech Challenge, an Automotive Skills Competition


Winning Students Received Scholarships and Snap-On® Tool Sets

Rancho Cucamonga, CA – April 2, 2019 – On Saturday, March 30, two-person teams from 21 high schools across Southern California tested their knowledge and expertise in automotive technology at the Top Tech Challenge event hosted by Universal Technical Institute – Rancho Cucamonga (UTI), a leading educator for professional automotive, diesel and collision repair technicians. The competition included theoretical and hands-on testing on vehicle parts, brakes, diagnostics and electrical systems. The best-of-the-best won UTI scholarships and Snap On® tool sets for their schools (tools value up to $2,365).

“UTI’s Top Tech Challenge is a great opportunity for high schoolers across Southern California to flex their technician skills as well as test drive what a future career in the automotive industry is like,” said Migdalia Vazquez-Valle, campus president at Universal Technical Institute – Rancho Cucamonga (UTI).

The U.S. Department of Labor projects that, by 2026, there will be more than 1.2 million job openings in the automotive, diesel and collision repair industries.1 To help reach that total, the transportation industry will need to fill more than 120,000 technician job openings annually, on average. UTI students can complete their training and be ready to fill those jobs in as little as 11 months.

Third place winners Andrea Vasquez and Cecilia Ulloa from San Fernando Senior High School in San Fernando work together to test their engine automotive skills in the Ford FACT Lab.

Students use electrical troubleshooting skills to generate power in the automotive skills competition.

First-place winners from Rowland High School in Rowland Heights, Dustin Demetria and Rodrigo Ramirez, celebrate with their auto shop high school instructor. Each student won a $10,000 scholarship to UTI plus a Snap On ® tool set for the classroom.

Second-place winners from William Workman High School in the City of Industry, Rafael Mendez and Marco Contreras, are all smiles after being awarded $7,500 each in UTI scholarships plus a Snap On ® tool set for the classroom.

Third-place winners from San Fernando Senior High School in San Fernando, Andrea Vasquez and Cecilia Ulloa, stand proudly next to new Snap On® tool boxes. Each competitor also won a $5,000 UTI scholarship.

Top Tech Challenge is an annual scholarship opportunity held at multiple UTI campuses nationwide.


About Universal Technical Institute, Inc.:

With more than 200,000 graduates in its 53-year history, Universal Technical Institute, Inc is the nation’s leading provider of technical training for automotive, diesel, collision repair, motorcycle and marine technicians, and offers welding technology and computer numerical control (CNC) machining programs. The company has built partnerships with industry leaders, outfits its state-of-the-industry facilities with current technology, and delivers training that is aligned with employer needs. Through its network of 12 campuses nationwide, UTI offers post-secondary programs under the banner of several well-known brands, including Universal Technical Institute (UTI), Motorcycle Mechanics Institute and Marine Mechanics Institute (MMI) and NASCAR Technical Institute (NASCAR Tech). The company is headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona.

For more information, visit Like UTI on or follow UTI on Twitter @UTITweet, @MMITweet, and @NASCARTechUTI.

1 Source: Based on data compiled from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment Projections (2016-2026), The projected number of annual job openings by job classification is: Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics, 75,900; Bus and Truck Mechanics and Diesel Engine Specialists, 28,300; and Automotive Body and Related Repairers, 17,200. Job openings include openings due to growth and net replacements.

Inland Empire Business Journal
The Inland Empire Business Journal (IEBJ) is the official business news publication of Southern California’s Inland Empire region - covering San Bernardino & Riverside Counties.