Meet Smith Hall, March's 2022 Student of the Month!
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Meet Smith Hall, March’s 2022 Student of the Month!

Smith Hall is a leader inside and outside of the classroom. Student of the Month is sponsored by Continental.

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Smith Hall is a senior at Rockbridge County High School in Lexington City, Virginia. Smith is credited for being a leader inside and outside of the classroom. While finishing up his final year in high school, Smith is currently working at a local repair shop, all while maintaining a 4.0 GPA and a Varsity spot on the Schools Lacrosse team. Welcome to, Smith Hall!

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Smith, what inspired you to take automotive classes during high school?

So, it goes way back into my youth. When I was around nine or 10 is when I started with Soap Box Derby, which is another form of racing. So, no engines in the cars, but it is cars. And my uncle and I actually started racing. And when I was around nine or 10 is when I actually placed eighth in the world. So, it was like a big accomplishment and it was a lot of fun, because you win local races and you just keep moving up. So, that got my eyes set on racing or just cars in general. But then as I got older and especially as soon as COVID hit, I was able to watch YouTube a lot. And I found Donut Media, which is a page that does a lot of car stuff. And me and my friends really got interested in being able to work on cars and just the thought process on how cars work and how we can fix them.

How challenging has it been to get a taste of the workforce while in your senior year?

At first, I thought it was going to be really challenging, but it was honestly just so, so rewarding. Because this shop, Fairfield Tire, it’s in Fairfield, Virginia, they’ve been really great. And Jeffrey Wiseman, my instructor, he actually reached out to the owner, David, and was able to get me a spot there. And as soon as I started, I really understood that it was much different from a dealership, because it’s not all just one brand, we’re getting tractors, we’re getting all sorts of things, just normal vehicles. So, it really broadened the scope of how I can see the automotive field. And it was challenging to also do school at the same time, but more than that, it really helped affect the way I see cars in class, here and the way I’m able to work on them. And it gave me a way broader scope of my knowledge on engines

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How are you able to juggle school, sports, work, and a personal life?

So, it really comes down to a lot of time discipline, not really keeping a really rigid agenda, but really just trying to be on top of things and be constantly thinking about, okay, what’s next? So, I’m involved in young life and student ministry in my local church and school and automotive. So, it’s honestly a lot of time commitment, understanding and respecting the different places I’ve given my time. So, I’m always thinking about how I can improve to respect people around me and how I can get the work done and on time, not be late and always just showing up, ready to learn.

Do you have a favorite project that you have worked on, or are working on right now that you’d like to share with us?

Yes, ma’am, I do. So, the big project that we’ve had this year has been a 2005 Chevrolet Impala and we’ve done a lot of work to it. So, it’s a love, hate relationship. We’re still working on it, but the end goal is to get it running and to be selling it for the school’s auction to make some money towards our organization. But so far, we’ve replaced the rear main seal, the valve cover gaskets, oil pan gasket, and we actually did a full transmission rebuild, we got the parts. And so, we just got the sub frame back in on it and we’re about to put wheels on it. So, it’s been really, really exciting to be able to work on it. But it’s a little bit sad too, because we’re almost done with it. But yeah, a lot of emotions.

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What are your plans for the future?

So, right now, I’m actually committed to Grove City College. It’s a college up in Pennsylvania. I’ll be majoring in biblical and religious studies and my eyes are set on a Christian ministry. But at the same time, I’ll also know that my automotive skills and abilities will always be with me. So, whether it’s even doing my own oil changes or helping a friend out on theirs or eventually down the line, being able to work part-time at some industry that works on cars. I know that I’m always going to have the blessing, being able to turn a wrench. And really, it makes me excited because I know that I don’t have some sort of tunnel vision on where I’m going, but rather I can really look forward to knowing that no matter where I am, I can be working on engines, I can be working on anything.

Smith’s instructor, Jeffrey Wiseman says, I go home every day and talk to my wife about my day and one thing I had told her after just a few weeks of knowing Smith is that I want my son to be like him. That’s how I want my son to be. If I can raise my son like that, I did an excellent job. Smitch is just an excellent kid.

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To nominate a student for consideration as a Continental Belts and Hose Student of the Month, click here.

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