Tristan Armstrong

We are fortunate to live in a community where most people can purchase nearly anything they want, from whoever they choose. We have abundant technology, information, and resources, more readily available than ever before. We have freedom and knowledge to make informed consumer decisions, yet it happens all too often: a consumer becomes victim of a scam, and we lose our trust in the marketplace.

How can this be? Just as there are many pros to this vast information abundance, there are equally as many cons. “Fake News”…it’s everywhere, or at least that is what we hear multiple times a day. We are constantly trying to decipher what is real and what is just a scam, whether through social media, advertisements, online reviews, or our next-door neighbor’s advice. We suffer from information overload, and not all of it is good. We need a mediator, a neutral party – someone that we can trust to help us make informed decisions.

My mother and I moved to Bozeman, Montana during my sophomore year in high school. We didn’t have many friends or family in the area and found the process of purchasing my first car to be overwhelming. We turned to the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to find a local mechanic that we could bring our potential purchase to for a used vehicle inspection. We are very happy we found Torque Auto Repair in Belgrade, Montana.

We chose Torque Auto Repair because we wanted to support a family owned business instead of a large corporation, but more importantly because it had been BBB accredited since 2014 with an A+ rating. We found a private-party car that we thought would work well for me but wanted to have an expert take a look at it first. Amy at Torque Auto Repair understood the urgency of the situation, and worked with the owner, Matt Dillon, to get the inspection done quickly, as there were many buyers in line for my beloved Jeep. Torque Auto Repair got us in within a day.

Matt personally did the inspection for us, and went over his results in person, as well as e-mailed a detailed estimate (including pictures) promptly. His quality work and advice helped us accurately make an offer to the seller, and we got a good deal so that we could make necessary repairs in the future.

The vision of the BBB is more important than ever before. In an era of information overload and lack of trust, we seek an ethical marketplace where buyers and sellers can trust each other. The BBB’s 100 plus years of positive service demonstrates its longevity and proves its commitment to advancing marketplace trust to both the buyer and the seller. My mom’s trust in the BBB is now shared by me after my experience with Torque Auto Repair. I want to support my local community and feel confident doing so when working with BBB accredited businesses. They have my business.

Tell us a little about yourself
I’ve overcome adversity and thrived. At 15, I spent my summer working in Gallatin County, MT as an outdoor/warehouse laborer, ultimately paving the path for my mom and I to make the move from Minnesota to Montana. I have a strong work ethic and am independent, determined, compassionate, and curious, and will apply these attributes throughout my university career.
List and explain any awards received related to academic achievement
I have not applied for any academic awards, but have received great comments and feedback from many of my teachers. I transitioned mid-year during tenth grade from another state, and still maintained B honor roll status.
Describe at least three school-related extra-curricular activities
Member, Rotary Interact Club. Meet several hours monthly; focus on various community support projects. Grade 12.

Member, HOSA (Future Health Professionals). Meet several hours monthly; focus on community health, including. Grade 11.

Officer, Student council at Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton Senior High. Grade 10.
Explain at least one leadership role that you have held
During grade 10, I was elected an Officer in the Student council Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton Senior High. We held meetings and events for approximately 4-10 hours each month and organized many student events.

I also hold the Teen CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) certification from FEMA. I am certified in disaster preparedness and emergency response.