From left: Andrew Short and Carlo Tisi (automotive teachers at Sturgeon Composite High School) with two of Monday night’s award recipients: Kaitlyn Giles and Saddie Sullivan. At far right is Nancy Suranyi, co-owner of Namao Auto & RV Repair.
Namao Auto & RV Repair is celebrating 15 years of giving out annual awards to high school students who have a demonstrated interest and talent for skilled trades.
Since 2005, the shop in Sturgeon County, Alta., has given out $500 a year to aspiring technicians and promising skilled workers.
This year’s awards were handed out Monday night to three students in the Sturgeon Composite High School (SCHS) automotive program.
Nancy Suranyi, co-owner of Namao Auto & RV Repair, said the annual awards have been a way for the shop to promote skilled trades at a time when the province is facing a serious shortage of automotive technicians.
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“I know we’re not the only shop out there doing this,” said Suranyi, “but maybe even more shops will take the initiative to promote the trades in their areas if they read about it.”
Her shop has worked closely with the school, which offers a strong automotive program. She’s even welcomed some of the award recipients into the business as apprentices over the years. The awards, given out to “Mechanic 10, 20, and 30 students,” are a tangible way to support the program, she said, and the selection is based on a demonstration of skill or desire within the automotive trade.
“The purpose of the award is to recognize skills and potential early on, causing that student to pause, realize they are being recognized for a particular skill, and then subsequently consider where that skill could take them.”
Over the past 15 years Namao Auto & RV Repair has helped some 45 recipients follow their skills and passion. A total of $7500.00 has been awarded since the inception of the awards.