Faculty, students partner with Catholic Charities for auto service project

Video courtesy of Catholic Charities.
Students and faculty from the Department of Mechanical Engineering have partnered with the men of St. Benedict’s Parish for the past few years on a philanthropic auto service project. Once a month, the volunteers spend a Saturday in TU’s Automotive Research Center (Joe’s Garage) performing basic car repairs and maintenance on vehicles owned by residents of St. Elizabeth’s Lodge, a family shelter in downtown Tulsa. The group services three or four cars each month with repairs ranging from brake replacement to oil changes and fluid checks.

auto service project“Most of these people have been in situations where they haven’t been able to pay for their room and board, let alone maintain a car, so usually their car takes the hit,” said project coordinator Steve Hanlon.

Associate Professor Jeremy Daily encourages his students to participate by assisting the men of St. Benedict’s while offering Catholic Charities a fully equipped heated facility for auto service.

“We enjoy opening up our garage for the work that these guys do,” Daily said. “It’s a great opportunity for students to get involved in Catholic Charities. They come in and do service-based learning while supporting the church’s mission at the same time.”

The monthly service project also is generously supported by O’Reilly’s Auto Parts, which regularly provides cash donations and store discounts.