Owner Nikki Bisconer first opened the doors at Driving 101 in January 2006
VANCOUVER — Nikki Bisconer is the president and founder of Driving 101. The school has helped teach Clark County residents, both young and old, to drive for 15 years.
First opening its doors back in January 2006, Bisconer has been working hard to help keep drivers safe on the road through a comprehensive program that uses various teaching methods. The school offers both Drivers Education, as well as being an approved site for Washington State Department of Licensing exams.
The driving school has a few locations. The main building and sites are at both Battle Ground High School and Prairie High School. The current location, which sits just south of Battle Ground School District’s Prairie High School, is still relatively new.
“We were in East Ridge Business Park for the first 10 years,” Bisconer said. Being so close to the high school, Driving 101 has worked to partner with several area organizations ranging from Battle Ground Community Education to the Clark County Sheriff’s Office.
The pandemic has called for the school to make some quick changes, especially in the early months.
“We had to completely reinvent ourselves.” Bisconer said, “It was overnight that the instructors had to learn how to use Zoom, how to get our PowerPoints to where they could go through Zoom, how to play the videos through there.” she said.
The difficulty of making rapid adjustments didn’t hold the school down, however.
Though the school did have to close its doors for a month following the beginning of the pandemic, since reopening, the positivity of Bisconer, and the over one dozen hard-working staff members, hasn’t been slowed.
“To be optimistic and think, okay, this is only temporary, everything is temporary, it’ll get better, and just keep pushing through,” she said.
And that optimism is something that isn’t limited to the staff of the school.
“People come here to do their drives and their testing, and they’re excited to be out of the house and doing something too,’’ she said. “And it’s easier to stay positive when other people are staying positive.”
Bisconer also sees the extended amount of time many in Clark County have at home as an opportunity for learning and family bonding.
“We don’t have a lot to do right now. So, [students] are getting a lot of time to practice driving because we’re not going to movie theaters, we’re not going to our friends’ houses as much,” she said. “So, it’s good bonding time with your kids to be able to go and practice right now.”
As families are spending more time together, Bisconer notes that going out and practicing driving is useful for young drivers. “A fun way to bond with your kids is just to go out and practice driving, it’s safe, and it burns some time, and how great it’s getting them ready to be on the road by themself.”
To learn more about Driving 101, visit www.drvn101.com.