By Katie Hurst
The SEMA High School Vehicle Build Program is entering its third round of custom vehicle builds. Earlier this year, SEMA partnered with five high-school auto-shop classes across the country to accessorize five Jeep Wrangler TJs. Using aftermarket products donated by 33 sponsoring companies, students customized the Jeeps concentrating on wheels/tires, suspension, and interior and exterior accessories. In doing so, about 200 students were introduced to automotive customization as a hobby, learned new skills and concepts, and gained insight for a career path in the aftermarket.
SEMA will partner with high-school auto shops to complete 10 customization builds in the 2019–2020 school year. The five high school partners from the spring 2019 builds will return to the program for a second build. Applications are now open for five new schools to partner with SEMA in this hand-on educational experience.
Selected high schools will receive:
- One vehicle purchased and provided by SEMA.
- Aftermarket products donated by sponsoring manufacturers.
- Allocation of SEMA parts budget for additional products and labor as approved by SEMA.
- Connections to local and nationally based manufacturers and service providers.
- Introductions to and visits from aftermarket industry professionals.
- SEMA staff support and guidance throughout the build.
- SEMA build guidelines.
- Pending approval from SEMA, option to participate in build program the following year.
All high-school auto shops are invited to apply until the September 25 deadline. If you work with or know of a high-school auto shop in your local area, SEMA encourages you to send them a link to the application.