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Sacramento's Kennedy High School aims to be leader in electric vehicle revolution

One Sacramento high school aims to lead the electric vehicle revolution
One Sacramento high school aims to lead the electric vehicle revolution 01:51

SACRAMENTO — Kennedy High School in Sacramento is hoping to be a leader in the electric vehicle revolution, aiming to train the engineers and technicians of the next generation.

The school's automotive shop class looks like any old body shop. JB Polanco, an automotive instructor at the high school, helped restart the program this past year, but now, Kennedy is looking to leap into the future.

The automotive program will be tailored to working on electric vehicles. Students will get practical experience and advanced training.

"We're going to shift our focus to EV to where our graduates will be ready leaving high school to be entry-level EV technicians when, typically, those are advanced level courses," Polanco said.

This can help those seeking degrees in STEM and those who want to work on cars.

"Everything seems to be falling in place and I'm excited for what the future holds," Polanco said.

It dovetails with other plans around the area, including Sacramento State's proposed zero-emission vehicle hub.

"Our vision is that these two pathways are working side-by-side and being innovative in the future," said Daniel Spinka, the Linked Learning coordinator for the Sacramento City Unified School District.

It's a big bet on the future. The program will begin with EV components starting next school year.

"Either you go to college or you go to work. So what I think these programs do is they come together so you don't have to make that choice," Polanco said. "You can get an education, gain skills in a high-wage career, and get out and start working and still get an education."

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