Management & Operations

Motorcoach operator launches nonprofit to help underprivileged students

Posted on February 15, 2007 by Joan Shim

Jim Thrasher, owner of Thrasher Brothers Trailways in Birmingham, Ala., saw that the same schools were always hiring his motorcoaches for field trips, and he wondered about the other schools. He learned that it was the parents who paid for the trips, not the schools, and some parents couldn’t afford to send their children.

“That’s when I came up with the idea of forming Educational Foundation Trust (EFT) Inc.,” Thrasher said.

EFT, which includes educators and members of the Alabama Motorcoach Association, aims to provide free field trips to at-risk Alabama schools. At-risk status is determined by students’ standardized test performance and the percent of students using the state’s free lunch program.

The group is moving fast to apply for federal, state and corporate funding to cover the cost of transportation, lunches and admissions fees.

“We’re going to corporations like Coca-Cola — large corporations — because the cause is education for disadvantaged children,” Thrasher said.

The nonprofit conducted its first official field trip on Jan. 25 with the fourth-grade students from Whatley School.

“We took them to Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church in Montgomery, the capitol and the governor’s mansion, and we had a free lunch in the park,” Thrasher said.

“It was incredible to think that some of those kids had never been out of Jefferson County,” Thrasher added.

EFT’s goal this year is to take 8,500 students from Jefferson County and Alabama’s Black Belt region on similar trips to historical and cultural sites. Thrasher Brothers, which has been giving educational tours in Alabama for 30 years, will take the lead in organizing the trips.

Thrasher also wants to take high school juniors and seniors on trips to car manufacturing plants in Alabama to expose them to higher-paying job opportunities.

“Our main focus is to get the disadvantaged kids an education equal to the other kids in the city that can go to Montgomery or Washington (D.C.). They hear about it, but they never get to go,” said Thrasher.

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

Gibson to lead west transit, rail practice for WSP | PB

His experience includes rail systems projects throughout the U.S. and internationally, including the implementation of systems and track work for a major light rail transit extension in St. Louis.

Profile: Susan Shaheen, Co-Director, Transportation Sustainability Research Center

Susan is an expert on the subject of carsharing. Today, we are using Lyft to travel from her office to the Downtown Berkeley BART station, where we will take the subway to have lunch in the Financial District of San Francisco.

COTA's Stitt announces retirement plans

During his tenure, he oversaw the transformation of public transit in Central Ohio, including a downtown circulator, an airport shuttle, and a comprehensive redesign of the entire bus network.

MARTA to add fresh produce kiosks at four rail stations

The markets provide a convenient shopping alternative for fresh, affordable, and locally grown produce.

U of Fla., FDOT, City partner to create ‘smart testbed’ for advanced technologies

This will be the first such program in Florida to involve a city, a university, and a state DOT. It will also involve industry partnerships to facilitate the development and operation of test bed.

See More News

Post a Comment

Post Comment

Comments (0)

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment

TruckingInfo.com

THE COMMERCIAL TRUCK INDUSTRY’S MOST IN-DEPTH INFORMATION SOURCE

Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

LCT Magazine

Global Resource For Limousine and Bus Transportation

Please sign in or register to .    Close