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Madison Metropolitan School District

Memorial High School Receives Automotive Service of Excellence Accreditation

Memorial High School Receives Automotive Service of Excellence Accreditation

Vel Phillips Memorial High School’s auto program is firing on all cylinders this spring, following an accreditation by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). ASE certification demonstrates that students are trained to a level that meets or exceeds the industry standards needed to enter the automotive workforce.

The community’s support of the 2020 Referendum provided major renovations to Memorial’s career and technical education (CTE) spaces, making the program a competitive, top-tier training center. Upgrades include a new woods and construction lab, construction and auto classrooms, and improvements to the existing auto lab. Prior to construction,  the school’s CTE spaces were disconnected from the main building.

ASE accreditation helps ensure Memorial students are set up for success after high school, preparing them for additional technical education or careers in the industry. Across MMSD, more than 750 Class of 2022 seniors graduated as CTE concentrators, a number that is expected to keep growing.

Memorial technology and engineering teacher Miles Tokheim knows the importance of high school CTE firsthand; a La Follette High School alum, Tokheim spent years in the auto department as a student. 

Now, Miles’ teaching approach centers around hands-on activities. In an interview with the City of Madison Fleet Service, Tokheim described the importance of bridging the gap between theory and practice, citing work order creation and vehicle repairs that have real-world applications as examples. 

In celebration of Memorial’s ASE accreditation, the Wisconsin Automotive and Truck Dealers Association (WATDA) Foundation and Easton Motors donated a van for students to work on, affording them even more automotive educational experience.