Bridgestone Automotive Facility

Bridgestone Celebrates Six Years of Automotive Center at Maplewood
Posted on 08/13/2021
Maplewood Automotive Facility
Jacqueline Nanney started learning and working in the Maplewood High School Automotive Training Center as a sophomore: changing oil and tires, repairing sensors and water pumps, managing service orders, and more. Maplewood High School's automotive facility

Three years later, she’s a recent Maplewood graduate and a full-time sales associate at a Firestone store on Franklin Road in Berry Hill.

“It’s had a big impact in my life,” Nanney said of Bridgestone’s partnership with Maplewood, where the company opened the Automotive Training Center in 2015. “There’s jobs out there that are willing to help you. Bridgestone helped us. They want the best for you.”

After more than a year of virtual learning, Maplewood and Bridgestone celebrated the in-person reopening of the facility Friday by giving backpacks full of automotive tools and school supplies to more than 90 students. Paolo Ferrari, president and CEO of Nashville-based Bridgestone Americas, said the company recently extended its partnership with Maplewood and MNPS by five years.

The Automotive Training Center is an onsite, fully functioning Firestone Complete Auto Care tire and automotive service store that gives students opportunities to practice their skills and interact with customers. More than 110 students have graduated from the program, and more than 40 have worked at Bridgestone Firestone stores.

“Nobody else in the world has it,” said T.J. Williams, the Maplewood automotive teacher who leads the program.

Williams said her students work hard and have to apply their reading and math skills to succeed in automotive work.

“Every time you do an alignment, that’s nothing but geometry,” she said.

MNPS Support Hub leaders, Board of Education District 3 member Emily Masters, and representatives of Mayor John Cooper’s office also were on hand for Friday's celebration.
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