Monday, August 15, 2011

Delaware Sport Center and the Arc of Delaware County Celebrate Success

Five people in the Delaware Sport Center’s Small Engine Repair course celebrated their success on August 10th. Mark Fenner, Joseph Fitapelli, Paul Hamill, Gary Whiteman, and Robert Wilcox received certificates in recognition of their achievements in the course provided by Jon Armstrong , owner of Delaware Sport Center. Jon has been offering this course for the past 3 years in collaboration with the Arc of Delaware County (DelArc). Each course consists of three 9-10 week sessions throughout the year. Seasonally appropriate equipment is included in the curriculum and includes: mowers, trimmers, weed eaters, chain saws, small motor bikes, ATV’s, and snowmobiles. The course covers understanding the basics of equipment/engine components, basic preventative maintenance, breaking an engine down and putting it back together, trouble shooting, classical problems/solutions. Jon has been a strong community supporter of DelArc. “It’s been a great joy to have the guys participate. I think they’ve gotten a lot out of it. And it’s been good for us, too.”

One class participant, Paul Hamill, had an additional reason to celebrate. When he arrived for the celebration, he learned that he was being offered a job there. Engine repair has always been a strong interest of Paul's. Julie Conrow, Assistant Program Director, Resources For Industry, Walton, NY shared these thoughts about Paul: “When I first met him he shared that he dreamed of some day having a job repairing engines. The Small Engine class that has been occurring was developed specifically with Paul in mind … to help him work toward his dream. He started out attending the class, and then had the opportunity to share his knowledge and assist with teaching the class. Now he is proud to share that he is a paid employee. The opportunity to learn and work in an area of such great interest has helped Paul grow in all aspects of his life.”

Paul said, “I am thrilled to have achieved my dream today.”