Academy Students Join Forces to Restore for Police
Welding, Auto Body, and Auto Technology Classes Assist Community
A three-way collaboration among students from different programs at the Eastern Long Island Academy of Applied Technology recently resulted in a renovated trailer for the Suffolk County Police Department (SCPD). The participating classes included Welding, Auto Body, and Automotive Technology. The Academy is the Career and Technical Education Program of Eastern Suffolk BOCES and there are three Academy locations on Long Island (Oakdale, Bellport, and Riverhead). This project took place at the Edward J. Milliken Technical Center in Oakdale.
SCPD came to the Auto Body class with a trailer in need of repairs, which they planned to use for transporting barriers once it was restored. Welding students designed and custom fabricated the front, sides, and functioning doors on the rear of the trailer based on a picture the police provided, taking raw material and cutting it to size, mocking it up, and then performing all the strategic welds. Auto Body students sand blasted, prepped, and painted the four rims, prepped all the bare surface metal and doors that the welding students had fabricated, and applied primer sealer and high-strength paint to match the SCPD fleet. They also applied decals, name badges, and reflective tape that SCPD supplied. The Auto Technology class installed and tested a new trailer lighting system and performed a health check on the entire trailer, making it clear that the bearings on all four wheels needed to be replaced. They also checked the function of the electric brake system, mounted and balanced new tires.
The Academy and SCPD have worked together before in similar capacities. These collaborations provide students with the opportunity to engage in project-based learning while helping their community. Said Brian LaBarba, Auto Body teacher, “Our students are proud to participate in endeavors that help the police, especially large projects like this that involve classmates from other programs in the school.”