October 14, 2009
By Valeree Dunn
Arts and Entertainment Reporter
Photo by Valeree Dunn
A student participant learns how to change a tire at Women’s Center event, “Girls Under the Hood.”
The UIS Women’s Center sponsored an informal session last Thursday informing women about general auto care.
“We are [having] ‘Girls under the Hood’ to empower you,” Women’s Center graduate assistant Lisa Koerkenmeier said.
The event was lead by Mylas Copeland, a general manager for Green Toyota of Springfield. Copeland discussed issues from tires and new technologies, to anti-lock brakes and fluid types.
The group was briefed on how to check the oil, what to do when driving on ice and the proper way to jump start a car. “I’ve been that guy that hooked it up wrong,” Copeland said.
Copeland continued by discussing the noises that cars make when a problem arises; he told women not to be afraid to give the mechanics every last detail. “It is impossible for you to give us too much information,” Copeland said.
Copeland later led the group outside, providing a hands-on instructional on changing a tire. A few women were pulled from the group to place the jack under the car, loosen the tire’s lug nuts, and pull off the hubcap.
During the first half hour the girls didn’t ask a lot of questions, except for the occasional, “Define that, I don’t know what that is,” as one spectator said.
The event lasted nearly two hours and the women had quite a few questions by the end. Some asked about personal auto problems, such as why a “check engine” light is always glowing on the dashboard. Other questions were more general or for clarification.
“I never expected so many questions,” Director of the Women’s Center Lynn Otterson said.