A Mt. Vernon mechanic is using his shop to teach some valuable lessons to high school students.

John Rutledge retired from an eighteen year teaching career at Franklin Technical Center in Joplin last May. During that time, he taught automotive mechanics to high school students. After retiring, he returned to his hometown, and re-opened the mechanic shop he helped his father build, which he ran for seventeen years before teaching. This time, though, he wanted to work with the school district as well as cars. He says the decision to open his shop up was an easy one, and hopefully it will help make the future of Mt. Vernon brighter.

“I could finish, and feel like I had done my job at Franklin, and I could bring something back to this community, and maybe do something here that would help with employment and also hopefully industry here in our own little, small community,” Rutledge says.

Mt. Vernon school administrators say they are hoping to expand the internship program to other local businesses in the future.