BRAZIL, Ind. (WTHI)- One local high school student is winning big. She is proving that STEM careers are for women, too.
Taylor Crafton is 18 years-old. She is a senior at Northview High School in Brazil, Indiana. Crafton says she was in diapers when she fell in love with everything cars.
"I use to hang around the barn with my grandpa and my uncle," she said. "That is what gave me the interest."
She doesn't embody what most envision for a typical auto mechanic.
"I love getting dirty and putting something back to together," Crafton said.
Crafton has been enrolled in an auto shop class offered at her school for two years. The class allows her to work on cars and diagnose them.
Tony Migliorini, auto shop teacher at Northview High School, says Crafton has grown a lot over the years.
"She is one of those that just jumps in," Migliorini said. "She is not afraid to work on anything. She is not afraid to diagnose anything."
Each year, the students put their skills to the test in the Ivy Tech Automotive Skills Challenge. Crafton recently received first place at the competition.
"If she runs into a problem, she won't give up," Migliorini said.
Crafton is the first female to win her division since the competition began. "Anything that needs work on, we just get the job done," she said.
She says her team was behind her the entire way. "They believed in me more than anyone I know, didn't back down..just kept their faith."
Crafton received a scholarship for $1,000 dollars. Her passion for cars will carry from high school to college. She said she plans to attend Ivy Tech to study diesel technology.
"Don't be scared. Don't let boys intimidate you. Set your heart to something you want to do and do it," she said.