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Alexanders Donate Model T to Automotive Restoration Program

A 1926 Ford Model T, traded to Alexander Nissan in 2013 by its Picture Rocks owner, has been passed on to Pennsylvania College of Technology students for use in a variety of automotive labs.

Blaise Alexander Family Dealerships donated the historic vehicle that was recently offloaded onto main campus, accompanied by brothers Adam and Aubrey Alexander.

“We appreciate this gift to our automotive restoration program from the Alexanders. In addition to value for our students in their curricular work, it serves as a way to engage prospective students in the restoration major,” said Elizabeth A. Biddle, the college’s director of corporate relations. “Our goal is to foster the interest in antique cars and the restoration industry among young people.”

Aubrey Alexander (front row, left) and brother Adam (front row, right) deliver a 1926 Ford Model T to students and faculty outside College Avenue Labs, home to Penn College’s automotive restoration and collision repair majors.
Aubrey Alexander (front row, left) and brother Adam (front row, right) deliver a 1926 Ford Model T to students and faculty outside College Avenue Labs, home to Penn College’s automotive restoration and collision repair majors.

As a vintage automobile that lay dormant for five years, the Model T – while roadworthy – needs a lot of work to make it right. And as one of America’s original examples of mass, affordable production, the relic is not so rare as to attract much investment at auction.

“We decided to donate the vehicle because we felt Penn College could benefit more from it,” said Aubrey, who earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration: management information systems concentration from the college in 2009. “I want to see what the students do to the car, and how good it will look, and have them show it off and be proud of it! That is more important to us.”

A group of students from the college’s two-year automotive restoration technology major were on hand for the delivery and, within minutes, were examining it outside College Avenue Labs.

“We’ll put it to good use,” restoration instructor Roy H. Klinger said. “It’ll aid tremendously in instruction as it ties in beautifully with our curriculum.”

Because the Model T has been in storage for so long, he said, students will methodically work through a comprehensive checklist of items: assessing fluids (checking the pH in its antifreeze and any moisture or debris in the oil, for instance), mechanical diagnostics, tuneup and testing.

Aubrey Alexander steers the Model T, donated to Penn College by the Blaise Alexander Family Dealerships, into College Avenue Labs on Sept. 13.
Aubrey Alexander steers the Model T, donated to Penn College by the Blaise Alexander Family Dealerships, into College Avenue Labs on Sept. 13.

The School of Transportation & Natural Resources has another Model T in its fleet of antique autos, and Klinger envisions the latest addition will be similarly used as an attractive way to publicly highlight the program. During career days, summer camps and other showcase events, he explained, giving rides in an open touring car is a memorable promotional vehicle.

For more about automotive, collision repair and restoration majors in Penn College’s School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies, call 570-327-4516.

For more about the college, a national leader in applied technology education and workforce development, email the Admissions Office or call toll-free 800-367-9222

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