BayouLife Magazine May 2022

Page 80

Robert Jordan: Auto Mechanic Extraordinaire BY DARIAN ATKINS


OB E R T J O R D A N W A S B O R N A N D R A I S E D I N Alexandria, LA. He moved to Monroe in 1984 to go to school at ULM. Jordan decided after one semester that college wasn’t for him. He was, however, mechanically inclined. In fact, he had gone to mechanic school before coming to Monroe. Jordan opened his own small auto mechanic shop in 1986. He purchased his first piece of commercial property in 1988 and started a licensed, legitimate mechanic facility. “I’ve been there in the same place for 30 years,” says Jordan. Jordan was preparing to retire when he was approached about coming to work at Louisiana Delta Community College. “I really wasn’t interested,“ shares Jordan. “But, they were so persistent I agreed to meet with the faculty over that part of the college.” When Jordan realized just how much the students needed someone to invest in them, he decided to commit. The road ahead wasn’t easy, though, and the pay left much to be desired. Jordan concluded it was better to focus on the students than on the salary. “I fell in love with the kids and with teaching,” said Jordan. “It became my second calling, you know? I mean, what’s the point of having something and taking it to the grave with you?” Jordan said the great thing about teaching is watching students grow and evolve. “You watch a student come through the door not knowing how to change a flat, and within a semester, they’re doing repairs, and within three to four semesters, they’re working at dealerships. You can’t put a price tag on building skills and watching people evolve into productive citizens. In four years, you watch them purchase a home and get married, all because of this training they’ve picked up here. Nope, you can’t put a price tag on that, and that’s rewarding to me,” explains Jordan. To be an effective auto mechanic instructor, you have to keep your skills sharp. Automotive technology evolves so much every year. Jordan says one of the reasons why LDCC students are so advanced is because he still uses his skills every day, keeping up with modern technology. Enrollment in Automotive Technology has increased 100% for the past three semesters. Jordan is shooting for 150% next semester and believes it will happen because the atmosphere and environment are


right for student success. His philosophy is never to leave a student behind; he finds a way to help bring them across the finish line. Ebony Magazine approached Jordan to do automotive repair videos. Ebony happened upon Jordan’s own YouTube car repair videos. His videos featured his work on Range Rovers, Jaguars, and Mercedes. “I had been working on $100,000 cars that most people take back to a dealership. When the Ebony representative saw the things that I was working on, he was impressed. I was asked to do 3-30 minute segments a month with video. I’m excited about my opportunity with Ebony. My podcast is set to air sometime in June,” shares Jordan. Jordan is married to Samantha, and together they have ten children. They met through his business ventures. He admits, “She’s the brains, and I’m the muscle! It works very well that way.” Jordan’s children are either in college, college graduates or pursuing military careers. Of six children, Jordan has one daughter gifted in working on cars, though she has no interest in doing so professionally. For more information about LDCC’s Automotive Technology program, call the West Monroe Campus at 318-397-6100 or email Robert Jordan at ABOUT LOUISIANA DELTA COMMUNITY COLLEGE Louisiana Delta Community College (LDCC), an open-admission, comprehensive community college, provides the citizens of northeast Louisiana with affordable and accessible high-quality educational programs, services, and modern workforce training. Supported by the Louisiana Community and Technical College System, a dedicated faculty and staff fulfill this mission through their commitment to student achievement, academic excellence, lifelong learning, and the use of current technology. Whether you are a traditional student just starting your college career or a mid-career person wanting a different path, LDCC has the resources and people to help you to the next step in your life’s journey. By choosing Louisiana Delta Community College, you choose to be a part of a culture of integrity, rigor, and honor. LDCC promises to do all we can to help you reach your goals. Start Here. Go Anywhere.