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Assignment: Education - Motorcycle Fabrication

By Lisa Klein, lklein@wkbt.com
Published On: May 22 2013 10:54:00 AM CDT
Updated On: May 22 2013 11:14:13 AM CDT
LA CRESCENT, Minn. -

High School shop class has gotten an over-haul. Motorcycle Fabrication is now offered at La Crescent High this year.

"It's a class where kids can pursue any interest they want that would be associated with the motorcycle industry," said Scott Martin, La Crescent High School shop teacher.

The school also started an after school Chopper Club for interested students to practice the lessons being taught in their core classes.

"With this they can actually apply math, physics, business, their English; just about any class," said Martin. "So, it's a way to actually apply it and have a hands on experience and get them excited about it."

And this year the students are all geared-up for something extra special.

"We're building a bike for S&S Cycle's 55th anniversary," said Hunter Frick, La Crescent High School 9th grader.

"S&S contacted us because we're a school that actually does stuff with motorcycles, and they wanted to see what our kids could do," said Martin.

The class at La Crescent High School is just one of a handful of programs being offered across the country. So S&S Cycle chose La Crescent as one of five schools to take on the challenge of building a bike.

"So, we donated five engines and five frames to the schools in order for them to get their builds started," said Jeremy Gilbert, S&S Cycle product analyst. "And then the schools went out and sought funding and outside assistance from local sponsorship to finish the builds."

"The students had to either build, beg or do whatever they could to get the parts," said Martin.

"We had to make a lot of phone calls and call different companies," said Brandan Fuchsel, La Crescent High School 9th grader.

"There were quite a few people who were not real interested in donating," said Martin.

"We got a lot of nos," said Fuchsel. "But there were people that were really interested in our program that decided that they want to help those kids out."

"I think those guys know that if they would have had this when they were in high school they would have had a leg-up on what they're doing now," said Martin.

These kids have had that opportunity to learn new skills and how challenging they can be.

"It's a lot more difficult to put an exhaust together,' said Frick. "A lot of little things that you wouldn't really... like... you just think it just goes together, but it's a lot of work to get it to go together and fit right."

"The kids were able to work as a team," said Martin. "To come together. To put their ideas together. And actually accomplish a goal. It's something they'll have to do for the rest of their lives whether ... whatever job they're working at."

And they got to do it on a project they're excited about.

"I like being able to go up to people and say, 'hey, I built a motorcycle once and I'm only 15 years old,'" said Fuchsel.

"It just feels amazing to know that you are one of the very few kids that get to work on something like this," said Frick. "This is like a once in a lifetime opportunity kind of thing."

And S & S Cycle helped kick-start the project.

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