Tayla Moiser has just passed her level 1 Diploma in Light Vehicle Maintenance with flying colours at Dearne Valley College. WEST awarded her a £100 bursary in 2017 to go towards clothing, equipment and travel costs.
What or who inspired you to want to be a car mechanic?
My dad is my inspiration. When I was little I couldn’t sit still, I had to get my hands on stuff, and I was always tinkering with my dad. I used to get the tools and help him with his motor bike. We would do projects together, from small things like changing a plug through to him showing me how to work on car engines. Sadly my father passed away when I was 12, but he is still the inspiration in my life and behind my drive to succeed in my education and in a career he would be proud of.
Now my Uncle Mike has sporty cars and he is always messing with them. He wanted me to do the brakes! I didn’t do them, but I have just swapped the tyres on my best mate’s boyfriend’s mum’s van.
What’s it like at college?
There are about 15 people in my class, but I’m the only girl. I did get looked at funny when I first started because of that.
One of the lads said that I shouldn’t be doing the course because I was a girl, and that I should be doing health and beauty! But I just looked at him and said I can do whatever I want and walked away.
Now I talk to nearly everyone and I don’t get treated any different. I manage better with boys. It’s more mardy but less drama.
What do you like about car mechanics?
I’m good at problem solving, I can look at something if it’s not put together or broken, I can look at it and fix it. I get that from my mum.
My favourite thing is probably doing front brakes. But I hate doing back brakes. They are easy to take apart but putting them back? No chance! I like doing suspensions too, getting the big spring out is right hard, but satisfying.
I just think it’s purely interesting and it’s better to learn yourself to fix your car. Plus I prefer to rely on myself than a man – and it’s cheaper than going to a garage!
What did you want to be when you were a little girl?
When I was at primary school I wanted to be a tattooist. I was good at art, and I wanted to do that for a few years. Then when I went to comp, I couldn’t do art as one of my options, and I didn’t know what I wanted to do until I was 16.
I was never a girly-girl and I hated it at school when I had no choice except Hair and Beauty. Then I thought about mechanics because it sounded fiddly but like fun.
What are your plans and ambitions?
I’m going to start my Level 2 in September, and pass that hopefully. Then I’m going to stay on for another year and do my level 3. After that I’ll see what happens, where I can go.
Eventually I think I’d like to be the boss of a garage, that would be right good. I’d definitely like to be working in a garage, on my own or in a team. And I’d like to be fixing my own car.
Advice to other girls and women thinking about motor mechanics?
It depends on what you like, but if you want to do it, then I’d say yes, you’ll have no problems. People are easy to get on with and the teachers are nice. It’s entertaining and fun to do – the time flies, and a three hour session isn’t long enough!
Don’t feel nervous. Boys are different to girls but they can be a lot more friendly too.