Auto body specialist seeks help to study abroad

February 18, 2022
Auto body repair specialist Shonalee Johnson.
Auto body repair specialist Shonalee Johnson.

Determined to make the most of what she considers to be her God-given talent, local auto body repair specialist Shonalee Johnson has now set her sights on a work-and-study programme overseas.

She was recently accepted into the Cambrian College of Applied Arts and Technology in Canada. However, the 31-year-old, who is seeking to earn a diploma in welding and fabrication, is required to pay US$8,674.81 (approximately J$1.3 million) by Tuesday, March 1, in order to secure her spot at the school. A second payment of US$7,923.09 (around J$1.2 million) is due on December 1. But Johnson, whose story of trial and triumph in the male-dominated profession was published in THE STAR on June 4, 2021, is asking the public to help her realise her dream.

A university dropout, the Trelawny native, who was raised by her mother and grandfather under tough circumstances, has since set up a fundraiser account with GoFundMe as time draws closer to her deadline.

"Nothing is more expensive than a missed opportunity and I believe, for me, this is the opportunity that will make me stop existing and start living, as well as to expand my craft and put me in a better position to give back to my country on a greater level in the future. I'll be qualified internationally, which will make me more marketable and allow me to go further with my skill. I want to one day own my garage and maybe be the first woman in Jamaica to be at the level that I will be," Johnson said.

The former William Knibb High School student added that "being a late bloomer as I would call it, life has taught me that, once an opportunity comes along, take it. Don't procrastinate, don't waste time. Take it," she added.

Persons wishing to assist Shonalee Johnson may do so via monetary transfer to her National Commercial Bank account, Falmouth branch, account number 444014458, or her GoFundMe account She may be contacted at 876 597 9871.

Other News Stories