Name: Caden Beurkens
School: McPherson College
Location: McPherson, Kansas
Areas of interest :
Body & Paint, Engine and Mechanical, Interior & Trim, Electrical, Frame & Suspension, Hot Rods, Resto-Mods, Performance Mods/Tuning
Era of interest:
Pre-War (1900-1939), 1940s, 1950s, 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 2000s, 2010s, Modern
What sparked your interest in collector vehicles?
I worked with my Dad on cars, golf carts, and other electric utility vehicles from the time I could walk. Over time that hobby evolved, and we started focusing more on classic cars. I have always liked seeing cool old cars driving on the road and enjoy being in the driver’s seat even more.
What motivates you to pursue a career in vehicle restoration/preservation?
I was lucky enough to be exposed to the automotive world from a young age, and my enjoyment of the restoration process intersects with a desire to share all of the joy associated with classic cars with a broader audience.
Favorite vehicle-related experience
One of my favorite vehicle-related experiences was traveling to the Amelia Island Concours this past March with a group from McPherson College. I had never been to an event of that level before, and seeing all of the beautifully restored cars was a great eye-opener to what can be achieved in the Concours restoration world.
Do you have a vehicle you’re working on / have worked on? What is it and what kind of work are you doing?
I have a 1981 Checker A12E that is a work in progress. It is a reliable driver at this point after I swapped the 267 small block Chevy for a 6 liter LS engine and overdrive transmission and now needs cosmetic work. I am actively working on the interior upholstery.
What are your short-term/long-term career goals?
Ideally, I would like to work for a high-end restoration/restomod shop for several years before moving back near my hometown to open my own shop.
How has the RPM Foundation impacted your education/career path?
The RPM Foundation funds allowed me to take a summer internship working on the 1953 Mercedes 300S project for McPherson College. This has been a great opportunity and experience, and I have learned an incredible amount over the course of the internship.