Our History

A Short History of Newgate:

1960s-1970s

What was to become the Newgate School we know today began as a partnership with the University of Minnesota in the 1960s. In the 1970s, the university’s focus changed, and Newgate was incorporated as its own entity. It became a tuition-free nonprofit automotive tech school in 1975, designed to provide vocational opportunities for low-income adults to help them find careers and make something of their lives.

In 1979, assisted by the Northwest Area Foundation, Newgate purchased a mechanics garage at 90 North Dale in St. Paul and established the Auto Body Training Center, primarily serving out-of-school youth from the St. Paul school system and Hmong immigrants.

1980s-1990s

In 1981, Newgate staff pioneered the concept of using the sales of donated automobiles as the school’s funding source, thereby eliminating dependency on tax-based government funding. All revenue to operate Newgate comes from the sale of donated vehicles, many of which are repaired by students in training.

In 1993, Newgate purchased its current property at 2900 East Hennepin Avenue in Minneapolis.

In 1996, Newgate began the “Wheels for Women” program. Newgate students repair better quality donated cars that are provided at no cost to promising single moms who are transitioning into school, work and self-sufficiency.

2000-Today

In 2004, financed by a bond from the City of Minneapolis, Newgate constructed a new modern training facility for the expanded Auto Body Repair and Auto Mechanic Training Programs.

In 2017, an addition to the auto mechanics shop doubled the capacity of the Auto Mechanics Program.

Today, you’ll find successful Newgate graduates at work throughout the Twin Cities. They are successfully employed and moving forward positively with their lives, owning homes, raising families, and participating in civic activities.