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High School Runs Successful Auto Repair Center

Posted October. 17, 2009 08:30,   


The auto repair center YG Motors is located at the corner of the playground of Yongsan Technical High School in Seoul. It was established by the high school in 2006 and is led by Principal Myeong Jae-su.

“Whenever I hand over my business card that says I’m the president of YG Motors, people are surprised and ask how can a school run a company?” Myeong said.

YG Motors is supported by the Education, Science and Technology Ministry since it is a company established under rules on establishment and operation of school companies. The garage is run by three mechanics and three teachers in charge of education and management.

In the business’ early days, teachers in charge faced many difficulties because of the range of responsibilities from management to promotion. Revenues have soared, however, from 10.08 million won (8,664 U.S. dollars) in 2006 to 108.74 million won (93,459 dollars) last year.

Sales are expected to reach 160 million won (137,516 dollars) this year.

Students of the high school’s vehicle department rushed to YG Motors to participate in a training session. Lee Seon-gu, who is in charge of YG Motors and also teaches at the school, explained the internal structure of hybrid vehicles.

Several students began taking apart car engines, and YG Motors mechanics answered questions from students.

Students, however, are not allowed to repair cars because of driver safety issues, but can still watch the repair process everyday and experience car repair with training vehicles.

Senior Kim Hyeon-uk said, “Practical training sessions have encouraged me to become a mechanic. Had I only read about car repair in textbooks, I would not have been interested in this type of work.”

Mechanics at YG Motors are also graduates of the school. Lee Min-cheol, who also graduated from the school, used to work at a renowned garage. At the request of the school, he joined the garage after it opened.

“I’m really happy since I can contribute to my alma mater. I’m trying to teach students well,” he said.

Jang Kang-seon, who landed a job at the garage last year, said he had been determined to work at the garage since his sophomore year. “My friends are happy for me since I can raise my capabilities, earn money, and even study at night,” he said.

Jang will be replaced by another graduate of the school because he will join a bigger garage.

YG Motors will turn into a comprehensive auto repair shop next year after the ministry stops supporting it.