Stephanie Stephens breathes new life into smashed cars | News
When you walk into an auto mechanic shop, it’s not the norm to find a woman willing to repair cars.
But Stephanie Stephens wholeheartedly embraces the term “fat monkey.” Fascinated by all things motor cars, Stephens’ journey in auto mechanics began in 2018, after she visited a mechanic to have the water pump on her Volkswagen Jetta repaired.
“After it was fixed, I asked him if he would be interested in teaching me because it’s something I’ve always been interested in doing but I never had anyone to teach me. He said as long as I was serious he would teach me, “she said.
When THE STAR visited her base in the corporate area, she wasted no time in naming the different parts of the vehicle, the tools she uses daily and the steps taken to resolve the various problems with motor vehicles. The Mandeville, Manchester native admitted she never had a defined career path. She found herself working on a forensic pathology degree in 2013 at Mercyhurst University in the United States. However, she decided to ditch her corporate clothes for oiled jeans to do something she was passionate about. She reflected on her first day on the job, when the team ventured outside of Kingston to work on an Audi Q5. She said the best part of her career is bringing back to life cars that have been stationary for a while.
Contrary to the stereotype of women in the auto industry, the 31-year-old said she was not afraid to get her nails dirty and cover them with oil.
“People have been here before and they think I’m only doing administrative work. They think I can’t do the big jobs or that I don’t want to get dirty or greasy. They think maybe you don’t. not be careful or you are not strong enough or it is not something that you would be interested in for very long. But for me I have the impression that no matter what gender your profession is your profession and what you are passionate about is what drives you, ”Stephens said.
She joked that grease isn’t a major issue as she practices regular hand washing, weekly manicures, and always has her oily rag on. She specializes in repairing Audi and Volkswagen, as well as working strictly on diesel vehicles. Its aim is to make them quieter since diesel cars tend to be noisy.
“There are different things you can do when you’re building an engine that can give it more horsepower or not sound as heavy and different things like that,” she said.
Currently in the process of receiving certification from the Jamaican-German Automotive School, the car enthusiast stressed that she doesn’t see her work becoming stale even with the influx of hybrid and electric cars. In fact, she implored her peers to adapt to technological changes.
In love with her profession, Stephens does not see herself putting down her tools. Rather, she revealed that she intended to dig deeper into the field of mechanics.
“I really really like what I’m doing. I’m excited when I come to work, I’m excited when I’m working on something. I’m excited to start something and get it done and I love what I do. do and I don’t. think I will one day stop loving what I do, “she said with a smile.