Female Automotive Student works on Cars and Stereotypes
Patrice Banks says that for most of her driving life, she considered herself an “auto airhead.” Like many women, she was hesitant to bring her car in for maintenance because she was afraid the mechanics would be dishonest with her.
Deciding to change that, Banks searched for female mechanics in the area and came up empty. It was then that Banks, who was working as an engineer at DuPont, came up with the idea to start her own female-centered auto shop. But first, she had to learn about the field.
She enrolled in Delaware Tech’s automotive program and dove right in. The flexible schedule and affordable tuition allowed her to continue working as an engineer and her instructors were supportive of her and excited for her aspirations to open an auto shop that catered to women.
Taking what she has learned from Delaware Tech, Patrice founded the business Girls Auto Clinic (girlsautoclinic.com) in January 2013 where she shares auto tips. Banks also holds monthly car care workshops. She recently appeared on 6ABC’s “FYI Philly” to talk about her experiences and the workshops she offers.
Banks, who quit her corporate job to pursue her passion for fixing cars, said she will continue to grow Girls Auto Clinic. She plans to open an auto shop and mentor females in Delaware Tech’s automotive program. “I knew I had to pursue my dream when it was all I kept thinking about,” Banks said. “I can’t imagine living my life not doing what I love.”