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4 | Transportation Today Wisconsin™                                                       Online Edition:

                     New Berlin Motorcycle BUILD

                                                                                Neither of the district’s
                                                                                high  schools  offer  an
                                                                                automotive  class,  but
                                                                                instead,  the  district
                                                                                partners  with  Wauke-
                                                                                sha  County  Technical
                                                                                College  to  provide
                                                                                opportunities  for  stu-
                                                                                dents  to  take  various
                                                                                classes  for  college
                                                                                credit.  Many  times,
                                                                                the  courses  offered
                                                                                by  WCTC  would  be
                                                                                too   cost-prohibitive
                                                                                for  individual  high
                                                                                schools   or   public
                                                                                school districts to offer
                                                                                on their own.
                                                                                   Annually,  dozens  of  SDNB  students   “It’s  really  important  that  the  district
                                                                                enroll at WCTC and earn college credits while   offers opportunities like BUILD to show stu-
                                                                                in high school.                    dents this field that’s growing and needs more
                                                                                   One of those such students is 2022 West   people in it,” Matthew said. “And if they like
        David Cotey, Director of Communications   of their mentors, and they can expect to learn   graduate  Matthew  Cannon.  Matthew  learned   working with their hands and get bored sitting
           and Public Relations             how to weld; cut, shape and form metal; use   about  BUILD  at  a  STEM  fair  the  district   in a classroom, this is another thing they can
        School District of New Berlin       machines such as a lathe, mill and drill press;   hosted  when  he  was  in  middle  school.  He   do to be creative and use different skills.”
            Every  Wednesday  after  school  and  into   and learn about the painting processes such as   already had an interest in racing and cars, and
        the  early  evening  hours,  a  handful  of  New   powder coating and spraying paint on parts.  knew BUILD was for him when he joined as
        Berlin high school students get together at the   But there’s more to it than just building a   a  freshmen.  Four  years  later,  he  earned  his
        district office’s garage and warehouse.  motorcycle. The students are involved in fund-  associate degree in automotive technology at
            In  one  corner,  you’ll  find  two  people   raising for the program, managing the team’s   WCTC.
        donning  welding  helmets,  a  student  care-  social media platforms and more. And come
        fully  following  his  mentor’s  instructions  as   May,  they  take  their  bike  to  several  racing
        he tries his hand at welding for the first time.   venues to compete against other high school
        Another student grips a SAWZALL and works   BUILD programs from across the state.
        diligently to modify a frame, nodding along in   “We’re  a  team.  We  look  out  for  each
        agreement as his mentor offers suggestions.  other and help each other and that’s what it’s
            Other  students  gather  around  and  work   all about, said one of the club advisors, Doug
        on removing a tire from a rim, while a couple   Giesfeldt, who is on the district’s buildings and
        others test and replace the battery needed to   grounds staff in the maintenance department.
        bring their creation to life.          ”They’re  getting  some  hands-on  skills
            These students - and their mentors - are   that they might not get otherwise. Myself, and
        part  of  the  School  District  of  New  Berlin’s   the  other  mentors,  we  all  grew  up  working
        BUILD  vintage  motorcycle  club.  From   on stuff. It’s beneficial for these kids. Maybe
        January  through  May,  the  Eisenhower  and   one of them will turn out to be a motorcycle
        West students learn the many tasks required to   mechanic, or auto mechanic, but if not, they
        take a street-legal motorcycle and turn it into a   learn how to fix things on their own car or bike
        flat track racing cycle.            in their garage someday.”
            There  are  more  than  a  dozen  students   The club, which benefits from its many
        in  the  club,  which  has  been  offered  in  New   sponsors and partnerships throughout the area,
        Berlin  since  the  2014-15  school  year.  They   has not only sparked students’ understanding
        perform the entire deconstruction and rebuild   and fondness of motorcycle culture, it has also
        of the motorcycle under the close supervision   raised  students’  interests  in  auto  mechanics.

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