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On the Journey: Ryan Schaeffer, CVCC Power Equipment Technology Program Graduate
For Ryan Schaeffer, tinkering isn't just messing around in the garage and making small repairs. It's creating a totally different, redesigned vehicle.

Ryan is no stranger to the desire to take things apart just to put them back together, and he is making a long-time fascination with function in mechanics into a lifelong career.

Ryan, a graduate of Cuyahoga Valley Career Center with a certification in power equipment technology, attended CVCC during his junior and senior years of high school. Upon graduation, Ryan was set up with a job through CVCC's job placement program at a mechanic forklift company. After a few years in the field he decided to pursue higher education at The University of Akron. A bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering culminated in May 2015.

"CVCC gave me a real-world education, not just from the textbooks," Ryan explains. "I feel like I had an advantage over my classmates at The University of Akron due to the hands-on experience and educational background obtained at CVCC."

Jerry Koenig, the power equipment technology instructor at CVCC, was a large influence and guiding light to Ryan during his time there.

"I still carry with me things that Mr. Koenig taught," Ryan says. "His dedication to the craft is very admirable, and he knows the ins and outs of everything concerning power equipment technology. He always told me to look and act professionally, and that was great advice that I still use to this day."

Power Equipment Technology deals with the repairing and maintenance of two-cycle and four-cycle gas and diesel-powered equipment, including all related systems and running gears such as lighting, batteries, cranking motors, alternators, and generators. All parts of the vehicle, including air and hydraulic brakes, steering systems, transmissions, and running gears for recreational vehicles, trucks, and construction equipment are included as part of the program.

Cuyahoga Valley Career Center is located at 8001 Brecksville Road in Brecksville. Students have the opportunity to acquire a number of certifications: Equipment & Engine Training Council's Two-Cycle and Four-Cycle certifications, Stihl VoTech Bronze Level, Towlift Lift Truck Safe Operator and OSHA 10-Hour Safety. After acquiring a required minimum of post-graduation work experience, students can sit for an ASE certification exam. For details, call 440-526-5200 or visit

By Kelli Comer
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