With interests in

Doing it Right the First Time – Mechanics and Communications

Portraits by ChiChi Ubina

Produced by Maya Hurst

Drew Hanna

Lived in Fairfield County: 18 years
High school: Greenwich High School 2023
Favorite song as a child: “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond
Favorite book from school: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Diner order: The full breakfast — eggs, sausage, hash browns, pancakes, toast
Favorite phone game: Clash of Clans

Drew Hanna recently graduated from Greenwich High School and is a rising freshman at Pennsylvania State University, where he will study mechanical engineering. This summer, he is further exploring his passion for hands-on mechanical work through his tractor restoration project as well as his position as a heavy equipment mechanic at Shawn’s Lawns, an excavation company. In recent years, Drew has amassed a staggering online audience on both YouTube and TikTok, where he posts videos documenting his various restoration and repair projects. Currently, he is refurbishing an antique 1940 Farmall M Tractor for the 2023 Chevron Tractor Restoration Competition.

From a young age, Drew was always interested in the processes of taking machines apart and figuring out how they function from the inside out. At twelve years old, Drew decided to restore an old family lawn mower. Following this success, he began collecting discarded push mowers from the Greenwich dump. Drew quickly realized that he could earn a profit by restoring and selling this abandoned equipment. Rather than seeking training, Drew taught himself various restoration techniques, tackling larger projects as he improved his skills. He explained that he prefers to learn by experience, consulting manuals and parts diagrams along the way.

During the summer of 2020, Drew began working on the grounds crew of the Milbrook Club, a position he continued for two summer seasons. Drew was introduced to Shawn’s Lawns —the company he currently works for. Last summer, he was given a trial period working as an equipment mechanic. A good fit for the excavation company, Drew continued working there for the remainder of the summer and was asked to return as a heavy equipment mechanic this summer.

During a typical weekday, Drew wakes up around 5:30am in order to drive to Shawn’s Lawns garage in Norwalk at about 6am. Beginning at 6:30, he will work on his assigned tasks until coffee break at 9am. Drew explained that much of his work is focused on fixing equipment such as leafblowers, bulldozers, excavators, and dump trucks. Following breakfast, Drew will take some time to tidy up his workspace before continuing to work on his projects for the day. Sometimes, he will run to the parts store or drop items off at a job site. His work day ends around 3:30pm.

Drew’s work doesn’t stop during the weekend as this is when he focuses on restoring his 1940 Farmall M Tractor, which he will submit to the 2023 Chevron Tractor Restoration Competition along with a report detailing the process. Drew explained that he finds many of his tractors and other heavy equipment through Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, and the growing community of heavy equipment mechanics he has come to know.
When asked about the most valuable lesson he has learned from this work, Drew stated the importance of not taking shortcuts:

“When you want to do something quickly… and you cut corners along the way, in the end you’re not going to be happy with the result. You’re going to end up re-doing it again later, so just do it right the first time.”

About the Editor, Maya Hurst

Lived in Fairfield County: 19 years
High school: Greenwich Academy 2021
Favorite song as a child: “All Star” by Smash Mouth
Favorite book from school: Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
Diner order: Egg and cheese on an everything bagel
Favorite phone game: Happy Hospital

Maya Hurst is a rising junior at the University of Pennslyvania, where she is majoring in Communications with dual minors in English and South Asian Studies. While much of her high school writing career centered on more journalistic endeavors such as her work with the Greenwich Sentinel, Greenwich Academy Press, and Daedalus Art and Literary Magazine, Maya has shifted her focus during college in order to further explore a variety of writing disciplines. At UPenn, Maya is a College Peer Advisor, a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters, and is a member of the community engagement committee for the Penn Reproductive Justice Working Group.

Last summer, she began working as a marketing and communications intern with Embellish Beauty, a Black and Native-owned vegan makeup company based in the Philadelphia area. Maya continued this position throughout her sophomore year of college, featuring the brand as the center of her final project for a Digital Marketing and eCommerce course.

This summer, Maya is interning at Fairfield County LOOK magazine. Maya is grateful to Elaine and ChiChi Ubina for providing her with this opportunity; she has truly enjoyed and appreciated learning about the magazine’s processes of cataloging events and sharing the stories of Fairfield County residents. Additionally, she has an internship at Polisi Jones Communications, a strategic advisory firm. Throughout this experience, Catherine Polisi Jones has been an incredible mentor to Maya, teaching her valuable skills in effective corporate communications and public relations. Lastly, Maya is working part-time at rag & bone on Greenwich Avenue, where she has loved learning both the fundamentals and intricacies of high-end retail sales from her incredible managers, Jessica Pereira and Michelle Penchenski, and her supervisor, Angela D’onofrio.

Maya spends the weekend and half of the weekdays working at rag & bone and then focuses on work for Polisi Jones during the rest of the week, while attending LOOK events and completing associated tasks during the evenings. When she isn’t working, Maya often reads, plays with her dogs, spends time with her friends and boyfriend, and has family dinners or game nights.

Curious about the different paths one could take within the communications field, Maya has enjoyed being exposed to various specialties this summer and gaining work experience in the process. In working for three different companies throughout the summer, she’s learned the importance of focusing on each task as an individual when faced with a large variety of work to be done. In the future, Maya would like to continue learning about the publishing and public relations industries and is also interested in exploring experiential marketing as well as the corporate side of retail.