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Donors sought for automotive program

When a local car club asked automotive instructor Len Menges how he’d like to be honored on his retirement, Menges asked for a $3,000 high-tech tool kit for his students.

For the past 24 years, Menges has taught in the 49er Regional Occupational Program at Nevada Union High School.

The tool Menges wants is used to analyze a car engine to find out problems, said Ron Cherry, president of the Roamin Angels, the club that’s helping to grant Menges’ wish.



“High-tech equipment is so expensive that high schools don’t have the money to buy it,” Menges said. “My budget last year was $1,600, in which case equipment worth $3,000 is completely out of (the school’s) grasp. So when an organization like Roamin Angels asked me what I’d like to have, I said we needed a scan tool.

“If we can expose the kids to the most recent equipment, then they’ll know what further education they may need to become an automotive technician,” Menges said.




The Roamin Angels is paying $1,500 for the tool, Cherry said. The club is trying to get the local community to donate the remaining amount.

“There are a lot of people who profit from this man’s fine work,” Cherry said. “That’s why we are asking them to contribute, as well.”

Throughout the years, Menges has added many feathers to his cap.

He received the Teachers Who Make a Difference award this year and in 1993 and 2003. His program won the Best High School Program in the Country award in 1989-1990 from the American Vocational Association. His students were finalists five times in the Plymouth-AAA Troubleshooting contest, which later became the Ford-AAA Auto Skills Competition.

Members of the Roamin Angels met Menges when they took classic cars to the school to help promote a scholarship they award.

“Len always encouraged his students to apply for the scholarship, and we felt he does an excellent job of teaching in the automotive program,” Cherry said.

At present, the Roamin Angels is busy raising money to buy the scan tool. Those interested in contributing can contact Cherry at 478-5616.

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To contact Soumitro Sen, e-mail soumitros@theunion.com or call 477-4229.


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