Corbin Rogers is a 12th grade student at Moore Norman Technology Center in Norman, Oklahoma. Outside of school, Corbin works at a local Volkswagen dealership as a technician. Corbin is credited for his leadership skills inside and outside of the classroom.
What inspired you to take automotive classes?
When I turned 15-and-a-half, I got my first car. It was a 2002 Nissan Xterra, piece of junk car. It needed a whole lot of work done to it and I had no idea what I was doing. So, my Dad and me would go out and we replaced alternators, belts, pulleys, all of that fun stuff. I really liked hanging out with my Dad. I just like that getaway, the free, fun time, just the relaxation. Ever since that, I’ve been really interested in working on cars and making that a full-time career. When I turned 17, I heard about Moore Norman. I got into the Moore Norman program last year. I did the first year and really liked it, so I moved up to second year. In the beginning of my second year, they put me at Fowler Volkswagen in Norman. Overall, the school has really, really helped me with making my decision and I really like having that bonding time with my Dad now.
Your instructor mentioned you play sports, how do manage that plus school and work?
Honestly, it’s all just crammed together, and I have the time for it all. I go to West Moore at 8:20 am in the morning until 9 AM, and then I come here from 9:30 AM to about 12 PM, and then I go to work. After work it’s 7 PM and if I have any homework, I’ll get it done. A lot of the time I don’t have homework, just because I get it knocked out in class because I want to have as much free time when I get home as possible. If I do have free time, I’m doing something. I don’t like sitting around doing nothing.
What has your experience been like on the SkillsUSA Leadership Committee?
It’s really great. I wasn’t really a team-bonding type of guy before. I would try to get things all done by myself and not ask for help. But, since I’ve done SkillsUSA, I’ve learned that a team is just way better to do stuff with. It’s nice to go up to somebody and ask a question and they can figure it out just like that, especially if it’s been taking you, I don’t know, hours or days to try and figure out a solution for it. Also, it’s just really good to see other people’s perspectives on things, because their perspective could be easier, or it could show you a better way to do it.
Do you have a favorite project that you’ve worked on at that you’d like to share with us?
At work, my shop foreman had this test for me. He was trying to figure out which lube tech was going to move up next. So, he brought in this Jetta, told me the general concern was a customer went into a ditch and now the AC doesn’t blow out cold air, but it blows air. So, I figured it out that it was a condenser issue. Initially, I was thinking it’s like every other normal car, you just pull the condenser out and it takes like two hours. Well, Volkswagens are weird, and you have to pull the whole front end off the car, the bumper, the core support, the actual metal bumper under that plastic bumper on the outside. So, that was my favorite thing I’ve probably done. It took me about two days. That was probably one of the coolest things, because I just figured it out on my own and I don’t know, it’s just soothing to me.
What are your plans for the future?
My plans are to stay with Fowler Volkswagen. I graduate May 24th, and May 25th I move to full-time at Fowler Volkswagen. I’m ready to just jump right in and get it all started. I’ll be moving to an apprenticeship, so, I’ll be working from 7 AM to 5 PM every single day, except Saturdays, I get one or two off. I’m ready to stay with Fowler Volkswagen and they’re going to send me to train down the line.
Corbin’s instructor, Brian O’Leary says,
Corbin is involved with a lot of things. He is a high school senior. He has a lot on his plate, and he is just very involved across campus. He comes in every day with a positive attitude. He doesn’t ever seem bothered, and I know that with everything he’s got going on, there’s got to be some stress there. He is one of the most positive students we have and one of the most involved students as well. He is very involved at his high school and as well as here at Moore Norman. So, I just adore that kid for doing what he’s doing every day and for coming in every day with a positive attitude and working his tail off.
Editors note… May is the last Continental Student of the Month Episode. Thank you to all the instructors that nominated students and thank you to the students that allowed me to share their stories!