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Friday, 21 February 2020 14:01

Second Chances Garage in MD, Celebrates 10th Anniversary with Help of 'The Humble Mechanic'

Written by Erika Riley, The Fredrick News-Post
Chimaine Brandford reacts after receiving the keys to her refurbished 2005 Volkswagen Passat from Charles Sanville, the auto repair specialist who has the YouTube channel “The Humble Mechanic,” on Thursday at Second Chances Garage in Frederick. CREDIT: Bill Green Chimaine Brandford reacts after receiving the keys to her refurbished 2005 Volkswagen Passat from Charles Sanville, the auto repair specialist who has the YouTube channel “The Humble Mechanic,” on Thursday at Second Chances Garage in Frederick. CREDIT: Bill Green Bill Green

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Sanville was particularly excited to work with Second Chances Garage because he knew that the auto body shop worked with apprentices, which he thinks is a practice that’s dying out in the automotive industry.


“We in the auto industry do a lot of complaining that things aren’t right, or this or that ... but a lot of the complainers aren’t doing anything about it, and shops like this are actually doing something,” Sanville said.

 

“And so it’s so fun to be able to work with these guys and have fun and teach them the basics, the basics-plus, and things that you’re not going to be able to learn in a school environment.”


“We in the auto industry do a lot of complaining that things aren’t right, or this or that ... but a lot of the complainers aren’t doing anything about it, and shops like this are actually doing something,” Sanville said.

 

“And so it’s so fun to be able to work with these guys and have fun and teach them the basics, the basics-plus, and things that you’re not going to be able to learn in a school environment.”


Joe Hall, head mechanic at Second Chances, works closely with the apprentices almost every day.


“The industry is not built around building up technicians at the shop or at the dealer level,” Hall said.

 

“They want to hit a button on a vending machine and have a technician who can work and do anything they want right off the bat.”


The learning environment and the low-cost cars allow the apprentices a chance to mess up and learn new skills.

 

Hall said he can always go back and fix any mistakes that are made.


“I try to get them into stuff that they’re not going to be working on for years, give them the confidence to try something different while they’re here,” Hall said.


Brown agrees that confidence is an important skill the students have learned from Hall, who received an award from Automotive Service Excellence on Tuesday night.


“As I watched him interact with the apprentices, the one thing that I know that he builds in his apprentices, as well as his knowledge, is confidence,” Brown said.

 

“And that confidence that he builds in his apprentices is going to carry them a long ways in life.”


And the work those apprentices do on cars in the program will carry others a long way, too.


After Sanville handed the keys to Brandford on Thursday morning, she opened the door and slid in, her smile beaming.


She said that it somehow had that new-car smell.

 

We thank The Fredrick News-Post for reprint permission. 


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