Instructors at School District 2’s Billings Career Center teach high school students skills, such as auto repair.
That skill helped a woman in need and brought some good lessons to the students at a special celebration on Wednesday.
James Demaniow and Sarah Shenk, Skills USA state officers, presented a 1998 Buick Park Avenue to Angelica Castillo.
“It makes me really grateful and it changes everything,” Castillo said. “Having transportation makes everything easier, go to the store, go take your son to school, go to work. It’s really helpful. I’m really appreciative of it.”
It’s also a special time for the students.
“Chokes me up a little, but makes me feel good especially around this time of year,” Demaniow said. “It feels very good. Feels nice to give it to somebody who’s deserving.”
“Feels good to help out the community,” said Jacob Corkish, Skills USA chapter officer. “Helping out a woman who’s worked hard to put herself back on her feet."
“It’s really fun because you get to see joy on their face, the emotions in their faces,” Shenk said. “It’s not every day you get to do something like this. So once it comes up, It’s like, man, it’s really, really cool."
For nine years, auto shop students have worked cars after school, as part of Skills USA.
“It’s pretty good to be a part of this tradition and to be chosen to be the one to present the keys and everything,” Demaniow said.
“All of our skills, members give back to the community,” Corkish said.
“Neat experience to actually help impact someone’s life for the better,” Shenk said.
“Teaching kids now about it’s really helpful,” Castillo said. “It really makes you humble and it opens your eyes to things like there are people struggling. Really thankful. It’s a big relief.”
Cars are donated to the Career Center and the students chose the Buick Park Avenue because it needed the fewest repairs.