When the Sealy High School Auto Tech Program received the car that students would be working on, it was scratched, had a spray-painted door and was full of spiders and mice. Just two weeks later, the class had transformed the practically abandoned car into a fully running car decorated in Sealy Tiger pride.
The program’s head, Kenneth Simms, got the car after trading it with the father of a student to get it in the shop. Initially he was going to use it simply for its transmission but when they realized the car could still run, the plans changed.
“We have a new football coach and they’re fired up and excited about this year and [the car] just fit really well,” Simms said. “We were able to incorporate as many clubs as we could around the school to help out with the spirit car.”
Freshman student Matthew Mlcak was the one who designed the car based off a video game he plays on his Xbox. He volunteered for the job because he had a specific idea for the design of the car.
“I wanted to give it kind of a black and yellow contrast so I made the whole car flat black and made the spoiler, the vents and the side scrapes yellow,” Mlcak said. “Figured I’d give it some spirit so we put the Tiger logo on the hood and ‘Go Tigers’ on the sides.”
The completed car is now put on display at home football games and Simms said once he fixes the wheels, they will be able to travel to away games with the car as well. He said he wants to show off the hard work that the students put into restoring the car.
“I’m extremely proud of the extra amount of free time they’ve spent during the nights and on the weekends working on this,” Simms said. “They’ve just learned how to take something in rough shape and if you put in the hard work you see how fast you can turn it into something that you’re proud of.”
Simms said the car had a lot of challenges for the students to overcome. One of its doors was painted a different color than the rest of the body after a sideswipe accident, dents covered the car and the top of the vehicle had leaked, causing mold.
The students have turned that car that was left in a field into the embodiment of Sealy Tiger pride that will be seen at sporting events for years to come.