Automotive tools discounted for students


Andrew Weedon / The Advocate

Automotive instructor Nancy Rupperecht demonstrates how to use a micrometer.

By Andrew Weedon, Advocate Staff

A long time tool discount program continues its tradition of helping Contra Costa College students break into technical careers in the automotive field.

Tool companies such as Snap-on, Matco, Mac and Craftsman have participated in the college’s student discount program for many years to help students afford professional tools.

“Every shop provides large equipment, however most require you to have your own hand tools,” Sturgeon said.

This creates a large up front cost for students who wish to go into the automotive industry.

The discount is designed to help students afford professional tools. While the discount amount varies by company, it is generally 50 percent.

The process for students to get this discount is very simple.

Students must first be enrolled in automotive classes.

In the cases of Snap-on and Matco, the respective websites state that students must also be full time and fulfilling their curriculum requirements.

After deciding what tools they want from the various tool catalogs, students must notify automotive instructor and head of the tool discount program Bobby Sturgeon.

Sturgeon then contacts the company to request for a representative to come to the college so the sale can take place.

For a long time professional tools have been incredibly expensive. Despite this, the tools you receive are incredibly high quality and will last a lifetime.

Snap-on, Mac, Matco and Craftsman even offer lifetime warranties so if a tool breaks it will be replaced at no additional cost.

These high quality tools are usually out of reach for students and young adults with less money.

Automotive instructor Nancy Rupperecht, says that having this program helps students afford tools that are not used or poor quality.

“The discount program is Fabulous!” Rupperecht said.

Former automotive student and automotive teacher’s assistant Carlos Rodriguez, said that he never needed the discount, however he has seen many students benefit from the program.

It is a common opinion that having the discount available is of great help for the students that use it.

However there is concern that it still might not be enough.

A 10 piece set of Snap-on metric wrenches listed in the student catalog would still be $246 even after the 50 percent discount. Students might still be able to afford a small number of tools, but buying all the required tools would be thousands of dollars.

In the past, representatives from these companies would visit the campus to give presentations and sell directly to students.

This has fallen out of favor in the last few years due to the representatives tasked to cover larger and larger areas, Rupperecht said.

Automotive students may take advantage of this discount by contacting Bobby Sturgeon in his office A-112, or at his email