There was a time when some jobs would be considered to be “men’s” jobs and others would be deemed “women’s” jobs, but these days, it’s not about who’s doing the job, but how well they do it.
Shaye Goddard is one of several girls in classes at the Caldwell Regional Career Center, and her work and interest in automotive technology have led her to being this week’s Associated General Contractors of Western Kentucky Technical Center Student of the Week.
Goddard — a sophomore at Caldwell County High School — is in her first year in the automotive technology program at the CRCC.
“I’ve always helped my uncle and my grandpa work on old trucks and tractors,” she said, talking about Joe Don Doom and Don Doom, respectively, adding that working on vehicles was a hobby instead of a vocation. “It was just something that had always interested me, so I figured I’d take that in high school and make it into a job.”
Goddard said she is learning about hydraulic lifts and four-post lifts in class right now.
“I really like all the different mechanical things that I can learn about,” she said. “(When I was younger,) I was really into these little train things, and I was always building train tracks with them. I’m a visual learner, so everything that I do is mostly hands-on.”
Alan Shaffer is Goddard’s instructor in the auto tech program, and he said Goddard is working in maintenance and light repair work thus far.
“She hit the ground running,” he said. “Right now, she’s working on engine maintenance, and she’s finishing up some of her safety instruction.”
Shaffer said Goddard is one of several girls in the maintenance and light repair class, which has four sections.
“All of my first-year students are in there,” he said. “I think there’s five or six girls in that class. I have had girls in a class from time to time, but I’ve never had that many at one time.”
Shaffer said Goddard has been a solid student in his class.
“She doesn’t shy away from anything,” he said. “If they were all like her, I’d be tickled to death.”
Shaffer said careers that students in automotive technology can aspire to include major repair work and auto service and maintenance.
Goddard said even though graduation is two years away, automotive technology is something she could see herself doing after graduation.
“I would love, after I graduate from here, to go to Nashville Auto and Diesel College,” she said. “I’d like to open my own shop and make it a career.”
In her spare time, Goddard helps her guardians on their farm and enjoys being with their animals, which include donkeys, alpacas and dogs. She also plays guitar and saxophone and enjoys reading.
She is a member of FFA at Caldwell County High School.
Goddard is the ward of Joe Don and Erica Doom of Fredonia.
A story featuring the AGC of Western Kentucky Technical Center Student of the Week will run in The Paducah Sun, The Times Leader’s sister publication, each Friday through April 1 with recipients chosen by instructors and administrators at the seven area technical centers that serve students in the state’s 13 westernmost counties.
In addition to the Caldwell Regional Career Center, the 29 AGC of Western Kentucky Technical Center Students of the Week are chosen from the Ballard County Career and Technical Center, Four Rivers Career Academy in Fulton County, Marshall County Technical Center, Mayfield-Graves County Area Technology Center, Murray-Calloway County Area Technology Center and Paducah Area Technical Center.
The Caldwell Regional Career Center serves students from Caldwell County, Crittenden County, Dawson Springs, Lyon County and Trigg County high schools. It is located at Caldwell County High School.
At the area technical centers, students are learning skills in areas such as automotive technology, electrical work, carpentry and welding that will help them join the workforce upon graduation and help fill the need for skilled workers in the area.