Russ Robson Scholarship Awarded to Kyle Bossick

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Kyle Bossick has only been with Ocean Bay Auto Body for six months; however, to shop owner and AASP/NJ board member, Ted Rainer, it’s as if he’s been a part of the team for years. Only 18 years old, a SkillsUSA contestant and the recipient of the AASP/NJ Russ Robson Scholarship Award, Bossick has proven that he is far ahead of his time.

“He is so teachable and he has such a great personality. He really brings up the entire team morale which we have all grown to really love,” said Rainer. “He has the makings of a super, master mechanic. He comes from a family of mechanics and technicians and his father is a tow truck driver. So, Kyle grew up sitting on his father’s lap watching him work. He’s just a total motor head! He thinks about cars day and night and if you ask him what he did this past weekend, he will usually say something like ‘oh, I helped my friend change his transmission’ or ‘I helped my friend put a snow plow on.’ He’s the type of person that I think down the line will own his own business one day.”

The AASP/NJ Russ Robson Scholarship was created in 2001 after his sudden passing in order to honor his name and all he did for the automotive industry and the association. Bossick was presented with his award at AASP/NJ’s Annual Meeting this past October by AASP/NJ treasurer, Tom Elder, Rainer and Robson’s wife, Luci.

With his scholarship award, Bossick didn’t do what most 18-year-old kids would do. Instead of blowing his earnings on electronics or new shoes, he spent half of his check on shop tools and the other half on I-CAR classes. According to Bossick, his first attempt at fixing a car was at 11 years old and he’s been in love ever since. What began as a way to spend quality time with his father on the weekends has now blossomed into a full-blown career.

“I’ve been interested in cars ever since I can remember. It used to be just a hobby, but after I got into votech, that’s when things really started to take off. I went to SkillsUSA when I was a junior in high school and then again my senior year—I absolutely loved it. I worked at another shop before Ocean Bay, but that didn’t work out. I’m much happier here and I feel really lucky to have won this award.”

As a valued employee and a joy to be around, Bossick is admired by his fellow employees at Ocean Bay Auto Body for his charisma and go-getter attitude.

“He’s so energetic and eager to learn that sometimes we have to remind him to take his time and really take it all in. He always is trying to go that extra step and it’s so refreshing to see,” continued Rainer. “For years, people have been saying, ‘there’s no guys that want to get in this business,’ but here’s a kid who does want to get in to it and isn’t going to stop. He’s just got the right stuff.”

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