matt hagan speaking to cap program students
4 min read

Mopar®CAP Comes to the Race Track

Beginning in 1984, the Mopar® Career Automotive Program (CAP) was established to develop the most highly skilled service technicians in the auto industry, providing auto enthusiasts with advanced technical training from OEM-certified instructors. The program has thoroughly trained thousands of technicians, ensuring they are ready to hit the ground running as technicians with an understanding of FCA vehicles and the equipment used to service them. 

This past spring, Mopar CAP took the experience to a whole new level by expanding their student and instructor recognition programs to include Assemble Your Future (AYF), with a day out at an NHRA race. This allowed them to reward current Mopar CAP students and instructors for their hard work in the programs and to also get the word out there about this amazing program and recruit future students. 

This year’s AYF program has allowed current Mopar CAP students to attend NHRA events in Houston, Denver, Reading and Las Vegas. Thanks to Dodge, Mopar and Pennzoil, the AYF events allow for 40 current Mopar CAP students and instructors to attend the race on Friday, receive a VIP behind-the-scenes tour of Don Schumacher Racing, meet Matt Hagan and Leah Pritchett, and network for job opportunities with 10 to 20 local dealership representatives who may have a position available for them following gradutation. 

At seven NHRA races this season, Mopar CAP has also partnered with the NHRA Youth and Education Services (YES) program. The NHRA founded the YES program in 1989 to assist middle and high school students in opportunities following high school for career growth. The program shows how Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) are applied to real-world NHRA situations both inside and outside of the racecars. They also have worked to connect the students with the idea that there are a variety of opportunities to participate in automotive and motorsports, but that these all require further training. 

The NHRA YES program has proved to be a success in each city it activates in, hosting up to 4,000 students on Friday mornings. During these Friday morning sessions, the students are able to network with Mopar CAP representatives and learn about other educational opportunities from partners like Specialty Equipment and Manufacturing Association (SEMA), Universal Technical Institute (UTI) and many others. Finally, for select students who attend the YES program, Mopar CAP has a special opportunity to either tour the Don Schumacher Racing pit area or race in the Dodge Charger SRT® Demon simulators following the presentation. 

According to Keith Yancy, Director of the FCA Performance Institute, which oversees Mopar CAP: “Parents and students see for themselves the vital role auto technicians play in the automotive landscape. Whether they are in the racing pits or a dealership, Mopar CAP students can look forward to a rewarding career in an exciting and challenging industry servicing our world-class vehicles.”

Recently, one of the Mopar CAP schools, Western Technical College, partnered with Don Schumacher Racing and Mopar CAP to sponsor Matt Hagan’s Funny Car in Dallas. Not only did the car look great, but it captured the NHRA Funny Car event victory. This was yet another great milestone in the first year for Mopar CAP to participate within the world of the NHRA!

Interested in learning more about CAP? Check out the site!

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