I didn’t know what to expect when I first arrived at the William Neff Center for Science and Technology in Abingdon, but I knew I was ready for a new service opportunity that allowed me to learn more about myself, while fulfilling requirements of the Bonner Scholars program.
I was assigned to work in automotive servicing technology classes with students from Washington County’s four high schools, a service site that hasn’t been available to Emory & Henry students before this semester.
During the semester, my focus is to work with students who are performing academically below grade level and can benefit from the individual attention. Many of the students are low in reading skills. I help them read the materials provided by the teacher in order to perform work in a shop atmosphere, as well as help them read test questions in the classroom.
The classes are part of the vocational track available to high school students in the Washington County Public Schools. The students come to the Neff Center for approximately three hours each day and take specialized classes in their area of interest. The students I'm working with are interested in careers in automotive work. While at the school, the students divide their time between the classroom and automotive shop. In the classroom, the students work on understanding concepts of car parts, identifying certain parts of cars, and using a computer program to research techniques and test their knowledge. While in the auto shop, they put what they have learned into practice by performing simple things, such as changing oil and rotating tires to more complex tasks, such as rebuilding engines and vehicle fronts. I make sure they follow directions and stay on task.
I thoroughly enjoy the time I have spent with the students and look forward to each trip to the school. I recommend this site to other students who are interested in broadening their horizons and tackling new experiences.
Emory & Henry students Ben Johnson and Lillian Minix, both Bonner Scholars, were assigned to tutor and mentor students this semester at the William Neff Center for Science and Technology in Abingdon. An account of Minix’s experiences will appear in an upcoming issue of the Emory Serves newsletter.