Alum spurs car donation

  Thursday, September 24, 2015 2:00 AM

Pittsburg, KS

Alum spurs car donation

Sometimes, it’s all about who you know. Other times, it’s all about who knows you.

Both scenarios are working out nicely for the Pittsburg State Automotive Technology Department, which has recently received another donation of a new vehicle for students to train on at the Kansas Technology Center.

Earlier this month, Nissan of North America donated a 2014 Nissan Versa to the Pitt State Automotive Technology Department. The car, which came equipped with modern functions such as a rear back-up camera and GPS navigating, will be used as a training device for students studying new car technologies.

“This car came with virtually every conceivable option available,” said instructor Mike Elder. “Our students will benefit greatly from training on a car like this with so many computers and electrical components.”

Valued at just over $15,000, the donation of the Versa was spearheaded by Greg Ebbs, a Pitt State alum who now serves as the marketing/contest incentives manager at Nissan North America’s Midwest office.

“Greg was one of my students when I taught at Pittsburg High School,” Elder said. “He graduated from Pitt State and is aware of what we like to do here in terms of having cars for our students to work on. When Nissan was moving out the 2014 fleet to make room for the 2015 models, he reached out to us to see if we could use a 2014 Versa. We, of course, were happy to accept.”

Along with the car, Nissan also donated a Nissan Consult II scan tool, which helps with vehicle diagnostics.

“Our students have already started diving into the car and scan tool, and I’ve been impressed with how quickly they’re running right through it,” Elder said.

The donation of the Versa comes just months after the department received donations of a 2015 Dodge Dart and a 2015 Ford Explorer.

“Having great connections and partners within the automotive industry has been wonderful for us because it has led to several valuable acquisitions,” Elder said. “We’re incredibly grateful to our industry partners and our alums for thinking of us and reaching out to support our program.

“The really neat thing about it is that we receive so much support that we’re quickly running out of room in our labs,” he said. “That’s a good problem to have.”



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