WILMINGTON, DE (CBS) — A Philadelphia woman is working hard to eliminate the stereotype that women can’t take care of a car without a man in the picture.
Patrice Banks used to work for duPont as an engineer, but came to realize she was a self-described “auto airhead.” She went back to school and is now what she calls a “shecanic” with a shop in Upper Darby on West Chester Pike where, by the way, you can also get your hair and nails done.
Next step, getting other women to come to terms with their repair-phobia.
“I knew there was millions of women out there that felt like auto airheads too,” Banks told KYW Newsradio, “so I call them shecanics now because they are graduating or transforming to now a more confident woman who isn’t afraid to use her hands to learn about her car or talk to her mechanic”
Banks has written a book, “The Girls Auto Clinic Glove Box Guide” in which she suggests the biggest challenge is getting a woman to believe she can actually understand what it takes to fix a car, and then do it.
“It’s definitely in the head. It’s the stereotypes about cars aren’t for women,” she added. “Girls don’t want to get dirty. It’s back breaking work and we’re just not going to get it.”
She held a forum in Wilmington attended by several dozen women, and a couple men, to promote the book and to offer advice. Banks would like to get more women not just to be able to understand or repair their car, but to become “shecanics.”
She also hopes to expand her repair shop concept across the country, perhaps with the help of a major auto parts chain.
Banks also has a web site where people can get more information: www.girlsautoclinic.com.