A Propane Personality: Micheal Smyth

October 22, 2018 By    

Headshot: Micheal SmythMicheal Smyth

Interim Director, National Alternative Fuels Training Consortium


Education

Morgantown High School (WV)
Class of 1979

Fairmont State University (WV)
Microsoft Certified System Engineer (MCSE)
2001

Work Experience

August 2003-05
West Virginia University
Academic Information Services

August 2005 – March 2010
West Virginia University: Learning Center
Manager of software consulting and training

March 2010 – Present
National Alternative Fuels Training Consortium
Assistant Director for curriculum development and training
Interim director


This mission of the NAFTC

Smyth working with the hands on training the NAFTC provides. Photo courtesy of the NAFTC

Smyth working with the hands on training the NAFTC provides. Photo courtesy of the NAFTC

“The NAFTC is a not-for-profit program of West Virginia University that develops and presents training on alternative fuels and alternative fuel vehicles, including electric, propane, natural gas, hydrogen, biodiesel and ethanol. We distribute this training primarily through a consortium of community and technical colleges, but also offer training to business and industry partners.”

Roles and responsibilities

“As director of a small group, I get to support all aspects of our mission. From executive decision-making to driving our learning center box trailer cross-country in support of an educational endeavor, I am lucky enough to have the opportunity to participate in all aspects of what we do, including curriculum development, training, building industry relationships and anything else that helps us continue our efforts to educate the automotive industry, stakeholders and general public on the importance of alternative fuels.”

Hobby

The NAFTC works with the Propane Education & Research Council, Blossman, Roush, Icom and Superior Energy, to name a few, on autogas technology. Photo courtesy of the NAFTC

The NAFTC works with the Propane Education & Research Council, Blossman, Roush, Icom and Superior Energy, to name a few, on autogas technology. Photo courtesy of the NAFTC

“My wife and I love to travel, and we couple that in enjoying different cuisines. Our most recent trips have been to places with great street food scenes, such as Cuba, Japan and Hong Kong.”

Best advice you’v ever received

“My earliest mentor stated to me the most difficult part of being a supervisor is to take on the responsibility of placing every employee under your care in a position where they can succeed.”

The future

“Alternative fuels are the future
of the United States and the world’s transportation needs. Propane autogas is growing strongly in certain transportation sectors, especially in small to mid-sized fleets – especially school buses. Smaller fleets benefit from the lower cost of the fueling infrastructure for propane if public fueling is not available. If the industry can determine what it will take in education and possible incentives to get propane marketers to look at autogas fueling as an opportunity to sell more gallons, then the limit on who would adopt propane as their chosen fuel source is limitless.”

NAFTC and the propane industry

“We have not only developed and continue to tweak our three-day autogas technician class, but we have built some amazing in-class training tools and have a quite amazing relationship with the Propane Education & Research Council, Blossman, Roush, Icom and Superior Energy, to name a few. We would not be near as successful with our autogas program if it wasn’t for this industry support.”

About the Author:

Joe McCarthy is an Associate Editor of LP Gas Magazine. You can contact him at jmccarthy@northcoastmedia.net and at 216-363-7930.

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