February 13, 2018

 a City College students paints the fire truck


City College Students Refinish a Park City Volunteer Fire Department Truck

Reception and Truck Unveiling set for Feb. 13



University Communications and Marketing, 657-2266


MSU BILLINGS NEWS SERVICES — City College at MSU Billings will host a reception to present the newly restored fire truck to the Park City Volunteer Fire Department on Tuesday, February 13 at 6:00 p.m. in the Automobile Collision Repair & Refinishing Technology program lab.


The reception will recognize the staff and students involved in this service-learning project, Park City Volunteer Fire Department, community partners on the project, and unveil the fire truck. The public is welcome to attend.


“We wanted to give back to the fire department for their hard work and firefighting efforts over the last year,” commented Instructor Steve Wodrich. “It’s how City College says thank you.”


Eight students in the Collision Repair and Refinishing class worked during the fall 2017 semester to restore a Type 4 wildland truck for the Park City Volunteer Fire Department. The fire department purchased the truck in Washington to upgrade its fleet of wildland trucks, but determined it needed a new paint job. Instructor Wodrich had a small-town connection to the Park City Volunteer Fire Department and got the ball rolling for the class to restore the truck. He obtained approval from City College’s Advisory Board and approached community partners for donations to keep costs of the project down.


a City College students paints the fire truck
The class worked on the truck for two months. During the course of the project, students learned about the much larger scale of tasks that it takes to restore a truck of this size. They gained experience in planning, time management and spraying of a larger vehicle. This project was a service learning opportunity where students gained real-life skills, gave back to the community, and were able to use the professional training.


“Steve is innovative, doing great things, and truly moving our auto program forward. His program epitomizes what City College is all about—preparing students for employment in their chosen fields,” commented Dean of City College Dr. Cliff Coppersmith. 


The fire truck is a Type 4 wildland truck complete with four wheel drive, which is something that other trucks in the fleet don’t have. While being rugged, it also carries an 800 gallon water supply and can haul five fire personnel. It will be used for wildland fire fighting and will be the second vehicle in command for vehicle accidents.


“The final product is awesome. I am proud to be able to tell people that students at City College painted this truck. This is a great program with state-of-the-art equipment. Anyone considering this line of work should strongly consider City College for their education.” commented Kellan Kamerzel, Training Officer for the Park City Volunteer Fire Department.


This project was made possible with community support from Billings area businesses including: Denny Menholt Frontier Chevrolet, AA Truck Collision, Carstar Auto Body Specialists, Hanks Auto Body, and Duck’s Painting Shop. Due to their support, additional tools, lights, and equipment were able to be purchased and installed on the truck by the students at City College.


“Another positive outcome from this project is that one of my students is likely to be hired by AA Truck Collision, once she completes the program,” shared Instructor Steven Wodrich.

City College is the only collision repair program in the state of Montana.