LEWISTON, Idaho – Lewis-Clark State College student Nate Drobish has been named one of five Top Student Awards $5,000 scholarship winners by the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA), while two other fellow collision repair technology majors, Nick Brown and Hanna Selzer, recently earned $4,500 scholarships from the PPG Foundation through the Collision Repair Education Foundation.
Drobish, who is from Orofino, received the highest scholarship award possible from the SEMA Memorial Scholarship Fund. SEMA awarded $296,000 in scholarships and loan forgiveness to help 119 individuals who currently work or are planning to pursue careers in the automotive industry. There were 97 scholarship winners with awards ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 and 22 who received loan forgiveness awards to help pay off student loans.
Drobish received his associate of applied science degree in collision repair technology last spring and is working on a bachelor’s degree in business administration.
To qualify for a SEMA scholarship, an individual must be at least 18 years old, be a United States citizen, demonstrate passion for the automotive industry, be enrolled in higher education, and be pursuing a degree or certificate that leads to a career in the automotive field.
In the scholarship application, Drobish had to demonstrate a passion for the automotive industry by answering a variety of questions. The application also included a letter of recommendation from Luke Thomas, an assistant professor in Collision Repair Technology. In Thomas’ letter, he pointed to Drobish’s time management skills, which allowed him to attend classes full time, work two part-time jobs, help with his family, and participate in group activities.
The SEMA Memorial Scholarship Fund is designed to encourage and support future talent and leaders in the automotive aftermarket industry. Scholarships are awarded annually to foster the next generation of automotive aftermarket industry leaders and innovators by helping them get off to a successful start in their education and automotive aftermarket careers.
Brown, who is from Moscow, and Selzer, from Lewiston, were among eight students with a special interest in the painting segment of collision repair to receive $4,500 scholarships to help pursue their careers.
The Collision Repair Foundation picked the eight winners after reviewing applications. The foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting collision repair educational program, schools, and students to create qualified, entry-level employees and connect them with an array of career opportunities.
PPG has developed paints, coatings and specialty materials for 135 years, serving customers in construction, consumer products and transportation markets. The PPG Foundation was created by the PPG to invest in educational opportunities to help grow the workforce and develop tomorrow’s innovators in fields related to coatings and manufacturing.
LC State’s Collision Repair Technology program offers intermediate and advance technical certificates as well as an associate of applied science degree.