Forty students from Pepin Academies were visited by a drag racer in December 2022.

Pepin Academies hosted a drag racer to speak with its auto-shop students at the beginning of December 2022 after Pepin purchased a trailer from Right Trailers Inc.

Pepin Academies had given automotive technology teacher Steve Conti a grant to purchase a detailing trailer for his students to use when working on car detailing. After delivering the trailer, Right Trailers offered to have drag racer and Right Trailers president Michael Scott come out with his drag racing car and a junior dragster.

“He put on a great show. The students were all engaged for two and a half hours. We set up a detail area and showed the use of the trailer,” said Conti.

Scott visited the Riverview location to teach 40 students from the Riverview and Tampa campuses how to drag race and detail drag racing cars specifically. During the presentation, Scott and his son and daughter engaged students by asking questions, showing them parts and techniques and allowing the students to showcase the skills they were building in the new detailing trailer.

Pepin Academies’ career and technical education programs teach students about cars, repairing, detailing and maintenance, among other skills that will allow them to pursue a career in automotive services. The new trailer will give students more opportunities to have hands-on experience with car detailing and allow them to gain detailing certifications before they enter the workforce. Pepin Academies is currently working to have its students certified in automotive service excellence as well.

Right Trailers also interviewed six students from the program to assess what they are learning and to build morale and confidence.

“The Pepin Academy has been a great place to let us bring all this into also,” said Conti. “I’m really grateful for the faculty, students and parents that I have to work with.”

With the help of Pepin Academies, Conti has built a network of industry contacts that he passes onto his students to help them get job opportunities in the field.

In addition to the automotive program, Pepin Academies has a growing welding program and strong relationship with Universal Technical Institute to help students receive post-secondary training.

For more information on Pepin Academies’ programs, visit

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Lily Belcher is a writer for The Osprey Observer and Christian Voice Monthly. She started as an intern in the summer of 2020 and has continued to write for the Osprey since completing her internship. Lily plans to attend the University of South Florida and major in Communications while writing for The Oracle.