Flat tyre jumpstarts idea for auto-skills classes

01 June 2023 | News

Changing a tyre probably wasn’t among the skills Giorgia Hickey thought she would learn at university.

The Bachelor of Viticulture and Oenology student said that after being in a friend's truck which suffered a flat tyre, she realised, "I wasn’t too sure what to do".

But Giorgia didn't let the situation deflate her. Instead, it jumpstarted an idea.

As a Future Leader Scholar, she works on beneficial projects for the community.

With a team of five other scholars (Troy Volman, Brock Stuart, Charlie Ludbrook, Levi Astle and Anna Stuart), she set out to teach basic auto-skills to high school students, "so that they know what to do as they start to gain licences and own their own cars".

"We headed to GB Motors in Sydenham and got taught how to change a tyre, jumpstart a car and check important things under your bonnet," she said.

The team recently went to Rolleston College to share their new knowledge. They also tried a session on campus but the weather intervened.

"Alongside teaching the skills, we also created a booklet for students to aid in remembering these skills in the long term.

"We also contacted local mechanics and vehicle associated businesses and got some awesome prizes including emergency breakdown kits, car cleaning kits, WOF vouchers and much more," Giorgia said.

Giorgia with the prizes.

She wanted to recognise the help they received from Selwyn District Council Road Safety, VINZ Rolleston, Challenge Lincoln, Springston Auto, and Rolleston Automotive.

"The prizes were given out for winners of two different car related quizzes and for participation in the tyre changing and jumpstarting.

"Overall I heard students enjoyed it and learnt something new. Most that attended had not known these skills."

Hopefully, if they are ever in the situation of having car problems, the lessons from Giorgia and the team will spark an idea, steer them towards a solution, and make them feel like they are in the driving seat.

Members of the auto-skills team Troy Volman, left, Brock Stuart, Charlie Ludbrook, and Levi Astle.

Anna Stuart shows Rolleston College students how to check under the hood.