Officials Mark Opening of Ventura College Diesel Mechanic Program
Students and Public Welcomed at Gibbs Truck Centers

In a unique public-private partnership, Ventura College, with the help of Gibbs Truck Centers, has launched a new Diesel Mechanic Program where students can pursue a certificate of achievement and an associate of science degree in diesel mechanics. Officials will hold a grand opening on Sept. 22 from 3-4 p.m. at Gibbs Truck Centers, 2200 Auto Center Dr., Oxnard, adjacent to Costco, and the public is invited to attend. Ventura College officials along with representatives from the Foundation and Gibbs Truck Centers will showcase the new state-of-the-art Diesel Mechanic Program to students and community members.

Gibbs is investing nearly $1 million in cash and in-kind equipment and support to establish the Diesel Mechanics Program at Ventura College. Two of the company’s service bays have become lab instruction facilities for students to gain hands-on, work-based training experience. Students in the program will also complete classroom coursework required for careers in diesel electronics and diagnostics, and in diesel engines and repair. Curriculum will be approved by the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation.

“The Gibbs Truck Centers team provides critical expertise and experience, such as hands-on training, logistical support, internships and job placement,” said Norbert Tan, Executive Director of the Ventura College Foundation. “This is a great opportunity for students to prepare for a career that is in-demand and pays well.”
Ed Gibbs, Sr., president, has operated the company for 47 years. His son, Ed Gibbs, has been its general manager since 2010 and noted, “Educated workers with technical expertise, as well as problem solving and ‘soft’ skills, are now required for most diesel repair facilities, and we’re delighted this program addresses these skill requirements to help students achieve a good livelihood.”

The program’s first students have just started classes a few weeks ago. Over the next five years, campus officials expect between 100 and 150 students will complete their diesel technician training. Diesel technology is a growing industry, with job growth expected to increase nine percent between 2012 and 2022, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, with starting salaries ranging from $40,000 to $50,000.

According to EMSI, an educational and career data research company, there’s expected to be a 7.5 percent increase in the job market between now and 2022 between Ventura, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Los Angeles and Kern counties. Over 7,000 bus and truck mechanics are employed annually in the five counties, with a median salary of $25 an hour.

Established in 1983, the Ventura College Foundation provides financial support to the students and the programs of Ventura College to facilitate student success and grow the impact and legacy of Ventura College as a vital community asset. The Foundation also hosts the Ventura College Foundation Marketplace, an outdoor shopping experience held every weekend on the Ventura College campus east parking lot. For more information, contact Norbert Tan at (805) 289-6160 or Also visit, and the Foundation on Facebook and Twitter (@VC_Foundation).