The National Auto Body Council (NABC) has expanded its Recycled Rides program into vocational and technical schools and colleges across the United States. Seven schools are participating in a pilot program of the national initiative through which NABC members refurbish donated vehicles and gift them to families in need and organizations dedicated to assisting others.
Washburn Tech in Topeka, Kan., will be the first school to gift a vehicle to a deserving family through the pilot program.
"They were one of the first schools to volunteer even before the pilot was announced," said NABC Executive Director Chuck Sulkala. "Auto collision instructor Eric Showalter was enthusiastic and committed from Day One. He really made this happen."
Other involved schools include Northwest Community Iowa College in Sheldon, Iowa; Manhattan Area Technical College in Manhattan, Kan.; Ranken Technical College in St. Louis, Mo.; Southeast Career Technical Academy and College of Southern Nevada in Las Vegas; and Center for Applied Technology North in Maryland.
"When I was asked to chair the NABC’s Recycled Rides for Schools committee, I immediately said yes," said Rick Tuuri, vice president of industry relations for Audatex, a Solera Company. "It looked like the perfect way to get newer vehicles into schools for up-to-date, hands-on training, while getting students and instructors involved in community support. When I met some of the instructors like Eric, who wanted to get this project moving, I could feel the excitement."
In keeping with the tradition of Recycled Rides, Washburn Tech held its gifting ceremony on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.
If you have or know of a school that would like to participate, please contact the NABC at (888) 66-PRIDE or by visiting www.autobodycouncil.org.