Local NAPA AutoCare Elite Members Fund Scholarships for TMCC Auto and Diesel Students

Winner of automotive technician scholarship.
Jeannie Byassee
Photo from left to right: Ted Bingham, NAPA Wholesale Manager; shop owners, Skip Thompson, Roy Foster, Mark Laudenslager, Monte Craig, (student winner), Jeff Pheasant, Dan Oakley, Shari Pheasant, Aaron Christensen.

The Reno/Sparks NAPA AutoCare Elite Business Development Group Members established the Northern Nevada Future Automotive Technician Scholarships in 2018 to benefit TMCC automotive students. The fund awards three $3,000 scholarships each academic year for second year automotive students, with each recipient receiving $1,500 each semester. The Fall of 2019 will be the second year the scholarships have been awarded.

To be eligible for the Northern Nevada Future Automotive Technician Scholarship, students must be enrolled full-time as a second-year automotive or diesel program student with at least a 3.0 GPA. Students must complete a TMCC scholarship application that includes a brief essay explaining their reasons for wanting to work in the auto industry and their future goals.  As a scholarship recipient, students are also eligible to participate in an 80-hour summer internship at a participating NAPA Auto Care shop and are given access to local technician classes organized by Finley Industries.

NAPA AutoCare Business Development Groups, supported and organized by Finely Industries, focuses on increasing brand awareness while enhancing service by sponsoring training for technicians, service writers and owners of the Business Development Group. The Reno Sparks NAPA AutoCare Elite Business Development Group currently has nine members/shops who pool their resources to make a greater impact on projects they fund in the community.

“Being able to offer this scholarship to three students each year will help build our local workforce and is one way our local shop owners are investing in our workforce and ensuring our workers have the skills necessary to be successful in our industry,” said Shari Pheasant, shop owner and president of the group for the last four years.

The Business Development Group also sponsored the first ever NAPA AutoCare Center for kids located at Terry Lee Wells Nevada Discovery Museum in downtown Reno. This first exposure to the automotive trade benefits children with opportunities for hands-on learning, and even teaches parents about car parts and repair processes. “We think this exposure helps the general public be connected more to their cars and have a heightened awareness of our value in their lives while sparking interest in young kids,” said Pheasant. 

“Our group is dedicated to the future and that includes kids,” said Roy Foster, shop owner and public relations director for the group.

The TMCC Foundation greatly appreciates the NAPA AutoCare Business Development Group’s support of TMCC programs and their generous investment in our students.  Groups like the NAPA AutoCare Elite Business Development Group are helping us educate and provide greater opportunities for our students.