Engineering School Fosters a Passion

I love cars, all kinds of cars – domestic or foreign, large or small, gas or electric. It’s not just liking cars, but also working on and fixing them. While this is mostly a hobby and something I can enjoy, there is a lot of knowledge and know-how needed to work on them. I am not a mechanic by trade or by education, so most of what I’ve learned is purely through passion and YouTube. Lots and lots of YouTube.

2 of the cars Virgilio Nunez has worked on parked in a parking lot

A thought that passes my mind is how similar this interest is to my recent studies in school. I graduated from Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) and find myself reminiscing about the good times I had while there. One thing I don’t miss is the assignments and exams for sure, but really, how different were they from the work I put into cars? The first step in fixing or working on cars is research – researching forums, videos, and as many manuals as you can find before even turning a bolt in the engine bay. A good understanding on the mechanics of how the car works is always helpful.

Now I’m not saying that all this in-depth research is required every time I work on a car, but these fundamentals have greatly benefitted all my car projects. At first, I started on small things like oil changes, filter changes, and other small service items. Now, I am at a whole new level. I have performed extensive modifications to my own personal car and my brother’s car. The biggest highlight is changing the transmission from an automatic to a manual.

This process is akin to learning in university: starting at small, basic concepts that evolve into complex ideas by the end of the project. Learning comes in stages, and you can only get out as much effort you put in. I continue to learn more and more every day and continue to push my limits on what I can do.