- Arizona Contractor & Community
Sunstate Equipment Opens New High-Tech Training Facility
Sunstate Equipment announces the opening of the Timothy J. Meenk Training Center as part of their expanded “Service Center” campus in Phoenix, Ariz. The custom-designed two-story facility features 28,000 square feet of office space, high-tech meeting space and training classrooms, plus a fully functional teaching shop bay.
Designed by Mendil + Meyer Design Studio, the Timothy J. Meenk Training Center is now the primary workspace for nearly half of Sunstate’s two hundred Service Center support and administrative team members, with the added capacity to host up to 150 visitors for Sunstate’s in-depth employee training programs. Sunstate currently employs over 2,000 people from coast to coast.
“When we broke ground in November 2019, we had no idea of the challenges that were coming in 2020,” said Sunstate’s president and CEO Chris Watts. “Thanks to Sundt Construction, our general contractor on the project, and our many team members who worked tirelessly to bring this building to completion as planned, we were able to complete construction and move in ahead of schedule.”
The building opened its doors for new occupants on December 14, 2020. Due to enhanced social distancing protocols, a formal grand opening celebration has been postponed. Training classes are currently being conducted virtually; however, once in-person gatherings resume, the new facilities will enable concurrent classes to be hosted throughout the year.
Sunstate is renowned for its award-winning training programs that bring newly hired or newly promoted sales, dispatch, and management team members to Phoenix for a series of one-week group training modules. These comprehensive training modules ensure consistency of service by empowering attendees to carry Sunstate’s standards for excellence to the markets they serve.
“Our training programs are a mainstay of our people-first culture,” Watts added. “Not only do they provide our employees greater opportunities to individually pursue successful career growth with us, but they also reinforce our unique and collaborative total team approach that makes it possible for Sunstate to provide a consistently best-in-class rental experience.”
This state-of-the-art training facility is equally geared up for hands-on technician training, including specialized cutaway engines, hydraulic system training boards, and Tier 4 diagnostic training tools. Groups of 8-10 Sunstate technicians, ranging from Apprentice to Top Line, will be invited to travel from throughout the Sunstate network to attend in-person training to stay abreast of new technologies from top equipment manufacturers.
Named in honor of former Parts and Service Director Tim Meenk, the new training facility brings his vision for a truly unique mentor-based training program to fruition. Meenk was a long-time team member who joined Sunstate in 1989 as an Apprentice Small Engine Mechanic. He was a fundamental part of developing Sunstate’s service department, processes, and one-of-a-kind Apprentice Mechanic Training Program. Meenk lost his battle with cancer in 2020, shortly after seeing the first mockups of the building with his name on the front.
“We could see no better fitting tribute than to honor his memory in this way. Tim embodied mentorship and leading through teaching—which is at the very center of what this facility represents,” Watts said.
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