Jenkins Auto Group donates for LSSC campus safety

Written by Paula F. Howard

When does a car do more than transport people?

When it deters criminals, adds to campus security, and supports special events and services.

“I was talking with Dr. Byrd and she said there was a need for a vehicle for campus security,” says Jay Hurley, corporate manager at Jenkins Hyundai of Leesburg. “They didn’t have one and were working to put funds together. We felt this was a great opportunity to help and contribute to that need.”

Realizing they could assist Lake-Sumter State College with all of the above, Jenkins Auto Group recently donated a Hyundai Santa Fe to the LSSC Foundation for use on the college’s campuses.

The new vehicle will be used primarily for security patrols and services on the Leesburg campus according to a news release and will support emergency response events on campus.

LSSC’s new security vehicle.

“This vehicle gives us that visual deterrent for criminals,” says Wes Miller of Miller & Miller Investigative & Security Services, who provides security services for Lake-Sumter State College. “In my opinion, we have the safest campuses in Central Florida. We pride ourselves on making sure we don’t have any incidents, and we proactively take care of anything that occurs.”

LSSC staff and students were pleased to see a local business take such an interest in school security, but they had help from other businesses in the area.

“Jenkins has graciously donated this vehicle and Signcrafters of Florida donated its wrap,” says Dr. Stan Sidor, president of Lake-Sumter State College. “In addition to improving security services on our campus, this vehicle exemplifies the partnerships we have with the Lake and Sumter communities. These partnerships are crucial both in terms of what they can do for our students but also how closely we’re connected to our communities.”

Dr. Laura Byrd, LSSC associate VP of institutional advancement and executive director of the LSSC Foundation, says, “All of our work is focused on supporting our students and their learning experiences at Lake-Sumter State College.”

Tom Formanek, president & CEO of Jenkins auto group acknowledged the reasons the car was donated lay in much of what has happened in the news on college campuses recently.

“The Jenkins Automotive Group supports education because we truly believe that education is the best way to protect our future for our immediate community,” Tom says. “In recent times, there have been some really ugly events that have happened and we want to do our part to make sure that the students are safe. This is just one way we can support that.”

Jay agrees with his boss. “Students should be able to go to school and feel safe. I don’t think there is any place more important place for them to feel safe than at home and at school.”

About the author


Paula F. Howard

Paula F. Howard, RN, finds life a never-ending smorgasbord of people, places, and things of interest. A returned Peace Corps Volunteer, she has enjoyed a 35-plus year career in business and communications, being recognized for her writing by several national organizations. She then became a registered nurse for another decade, continuing to enjoy serving people, in places, doing things.

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