WyoTech Student Receives Jessi Combs Foundation Scholarship

WyoTech Student Receives Jessi Combs Foundation Scholarship

WyoTech announced that one of its students, Kate Martin, was awarded a scholarship from The Jessi Combs Foundation in recognition of her enthusiasm and devotion to blaze her very own distinctive trail as a woman in the trade of her choice. 

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Kate Martin hopes to just one working day have her individual traditional truck restoration and modification shop specializing in building out Ford trucks from the 1960s to 1970s.

The Jessi Combs Foundation was founded in 2019 to honor the late Jessi Combs, a renowned racecar driver and woman powerhouse in the trades who also transpired to be a graduate of WyoTech. The mission of the foundation is to educate, inspire and empower the following era of trailblazing and stereotype-breaking gals, which aligns completely with the goal of Women’s Background Month — to commemorate and stimulate the study, observance and celebration of the significant part girls enjoy in American record.

As an acclaimed racecar driver and fearless chief in the trades, Combs was a history maker herself. Now, Kate Martin has the opportunity to publish her own chapter in the background publications.

“We independently evaluation each individual video application we receive,” said Dana Wilke, cofounder and board member of The Jessi Combs Basis. “There are constantly a handful that stand out from the rest, and Kate Martin was one of them. Her enthusiasm and perseverance to blazing her possess exclusive trail as a lady in the trades was clear.

“It is pioneers like Jessi, and now, the long term era of women like Kate and our relatives of JCF scholarship recipients, that present girls they can excel in whichever career path they pick. These women are our heroes. We hope that by shining a spotlight on their challenging function, grit and resolve in the trades it will demonstrate other individuals what is achievable. The sky’s the limit. The scholarship method is funded completely by donations from people today and companies who believe that in Jessi and every thing she stood for.” 

The Rumble Bee

Immediately after Martin purchased her to start with truck in 2017, a 1976 Ford F100 she nicknamed “Rumble Bee” owing to its yellow exterior, she started doing work on it with her father to better comprehend how the motor vehicle worked. This advanced into a personalized enthusiasm for Martin, who graduated from high faculty in 2019. After in the beginning enrolling at Walla Walla College in Walla Walla, Clean., for the 2019-2020 school year, she made the decision to rethink her focus and return to her passion for vans soon after the COVID-19 pandemic shut down in-man or woman courses. 

Kate Martin working on the “Rumble Bee,” a 1976 Ford F100

Martin left Walla Walla University and speedily received to get the job done fixing and improving vehicles. She acquired five vans in different conditions and utilised them to source areas to finish repairs for her particular assortment. 

“I have determination to discover, but it’s not the identical as acquiring a structured program laid out for you,” mentioned Martin. “Working on my vehicles, I wasn’t reaching what I believed I must be at the price I envisioned. In need to have of a little more structure and starting to be discouraged at the speed I could educate myself, my sister and her spouse recommended that I need to go back again to faculty. They encouraged me to glance into some tech educational facilities and uncover out what it would choose to go to them and what they available. So I did, and now I am attending WyoTech.”

Martin to begin with heard about WyoTech by means of her cousin, who is enrolled in the diesel technician plan. Immediately after conducting her have investigate into the automotive trade school, Martin understood that she had discovered just one of the only automotive, diesel, and collision and refinishing tech educational institutions that even now was presenting in-man or woman courses with hands-on store function. The faculty also did not need masks or impose other limits, which Martin found to be crucial. 

The primary rationale for enrollment, Martin observed, was the community and family environment that she felt as soon as she stepped on campus. 

“My time at WyoTech has been busy and fun,” Martin claimed. “I’m learning much more and additional info every working day, and making use of it hands-on in the shop has aided me attain self-assurance and lose timidity by accomplishing jobs myself.

“The instructors are genuine and very knowledgeable. They care for your improvement in competencies and have your interests at heart. I’m energized to not be calling elements with names ‘things’ anymore, as effectively as discovering the procedures for restoring autos, both from a technician standpoint and a restoration standpoint.”

Women in the Trades

Even with her enthusiasm for vehicles, field details indicates Martin is, in numerous techniques, an anomaly. Facts from the U.S. Section of Labor exhibits that there are handful of females entering the qualified labor workforce, with just 11.6{54200d265998863b76fd4ce36c7d4cb67028262ee579cdcba83d47ef416fdf44} of persons who accomplished apprenticeship programs in the 2020 fiscal calendar year staying feminine — which amounts to 4,204 women in comparison to 32,191 men. 3 yrs earlier in 2018, only 7.3{54200d265998863b76fd4ce36c7d4cb67028262ee579cdcba83d47ef416fdf44} of the individuals who accomplished apprenticeships were gals, according to a study by the Centre for American Progress. 

By featuring help in many forms — for case in point, The Jessi Combs Foundation — WyoTech actively encourages women of all ages to enter and be successful in the trades. Martin acknowledged the critical part that trade universities can participate in in aiding women see by themselves thriving in a trade career. 

“I believe that trade educational institutions want to assistance teach females on the value of a job in the trades,” mentioned Martin. “By no suggests does acquiring a trade job imply you are fewer female or womanly.

“There is a enormous require for a lot more persons in the trades, no matter of gender. Just be powerful in who you are, prove others’ opinions completely wrong, use your enthusiasm to affect other folks, and pique curiosity via your enjoyment in what you do so that folks are forced to inquire you why you like what you do.” 

Martin is scheduled to graduate from WyoTech in June 2022. Submit-graduation, she programs on gaining experience in a restoration shop even though concurrently performing on a few of job vehicles. She hopes to have her possess typical truck restoration and modification store specializing in creating out Ford trucks from the 1960s to 1970s, with the possible to develop to typical Chevy and Dodge pickups. Martin’s aim is to restore the nostalgia of hard get the job done and excellent instances by putting these typical vans again on the street for distinct generations of automobile fans to love. 

For extra information and facts about WyoTech, visit wyotech.edu.