November 29, 2023


Reinvent your ride!

Star Motors Operator Starts Nonprofit to Teach Auto-Mechanic Capabilities

4 min read

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By Collin Breaux

The trade workforce is missing nowadays—particularly when it comes to car mechanics, in accordance to Star Motors European Provider operator Chris Knuth.

In get to rejuvenate that sector and give these in want a second probability, Knuth has started off a nonprofit that will educate individuals experienced vehicle repair skills—with an goal in the direction of securing employment in a shop.

Image: Courtesy of APAC ATI

Knuth is the founder of APAC Automotive Institute (ATI), a nonprofit supposed to instruct veterans, persons re-getting into culture from incarceration, men and women who are recovering from substance abuse and other at-risk populations. He hopes to get the program entirely operational this thirty day period right after internet hosting a grand opening and ribbon-reducing on June 28.

Learners will go by a cost-free 10-month teaching software that incorporates a variety of modules and an eventual graduation. They will then get to perform in a store, as extensive as that store presents ongoing education and personnel benefits. Individuals are in a position to graduate early if they exhibit more than enough proficiency.

Knuth highlighted the great importance of continuing education and learning for system graduates, because the automobile maintenance field is one particular that can transform above time.

APAC ATI training will choose location at Star Motors (32961 Calle Perfecto in San Juan Capistrano), a luxurious maintenance shop that has served South Orange County drivers for much more than 30 several years.

Knuth arrived up with the idea for APAC ATI when he and his wife went to Uganda with friends in January 2020. He noticed there was a need to have for vehicle-fix expertise there, and subsequently preferred to set up a task to deal with the deficiency.

On the other hand, the COVID-19 pandemic set a halt to those intercontinental ideas.

“I believed I would just start out a nonprofit in California,” Knuth claimed. “This teaching model was developed from the apprentice plan we’ve had at Star Motors given that 2014.”

The nonprofit’s ambitions currently went by way of what could be thought of a pilot method of kinds, considering that two apprentices hired previous calendar year by Star Motors have considering that long gone on to operate in the Star Motors shop as specialists following likely via a equivalent system.

The very first stage for possible learners is filling out an application for the system, which is readily available on the nonprofit’s web page at

“Once (they fill out an application), we will screen them for aptitude,” Knuth explained.

Section of that screening will involve an interview.

The prospective for a second probability at daily life that learners are supplied isn’t just simply turning their lifetime about. It could be an prospect to dwell easily, due to the fact Knuth notes it’s frequent for vehicle technicians to make 6 figures.

That pay back array can be far more captivating when 1 considers that latest college graduates who did not go the trade route can be saddled with pupil debt.

“Our college students are heading to occur into this financial debt-free,” Knuth stated.

As for how the reception has been so considerably in the neighborhood spot toward APAC ATI, Knuth mentioned people today in San Juan Capistrano have been welcoming.

“The grand opening was awesome. It was pleasurable to carry the group alongside one another and celebrate this,” Knuth stated. “I’ve had my head down for the previous two yrs working on this. What produced an impact on me for the duration of the ribbon-reducing was associates of the group voicing their support and viewing how this was wanted.”

Knuth hopes that endorsement carries on as APAC ATI further normally takes shape. 

“I was intentional about building it a nonprofit, because I want the assistance of the local community,” he reported.

Collin Breaux

Collin Breaux handles San Juan Capistrano and other South Orange County information as the Metropolis Editor for The Capistrano Dispatch. Right before going to California, he covered Hurricane Michael, politics and training in Panama Town, Florida. He can be arrived at by electronic mail at [email protected]

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