Hoffman Estates, Ill. (May 25, 2022) –
Toyota Motor North America, Inc. believes in taking charge of the future – and that’s exactly why they connected the Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF) to Toyota Auto Body California, Inc. for a donation of 944 quarter panels, valued at $632,480, which will benefit collision repair educational programs around the country. Quarter panels will be distributed to over 100 schools, immediately impacting over 3,000 students by allowing them to practice the skills needed to success in this field; however, the long-term impact will be much higher as instructors often reuse these panels in multiple semesters with many more students.
“Technician shortage concerns come up every time I talk to our certified collision centers, field offices and the industry,” Toyota Motor North America Collision Repair & Refinish Manager Kazuyo Jones explains why it’s important to connect industry with schools. “When Toyota comes across those part or vehicle donation opportunities, our organization wants to utilize those opportunities for people who need them. We need to energize the industry by doing what we can to support its future workforce.”
Collision education programs are frequently underfunded, limiting instructors’ ability to purchase vehicle parts to use while training students. By partnering with the Foundation, Toyota is helping ensure that the next generation of collision repair professionals receive the hands-on experience necessary to graduate with the skills they need to successfully join the industry as entry-level technicians.
“This type of in-kind donation is mentioned as one of the most needed items by collision programs across the US,” says CREF Director of Marketing and Project Management Amber Ritter. “This is truly an example of a donation that allows students to learn, practice and hone the important skills that lead to rewarding careers. Repetitions are an important part of the learning process, and Toyota’s donation is helping to make that possible.”
Industry members interested in getting involved and supporting the Collision Repair Education Foundation’s efforts to assist secondary and post-secondary collision repair training programs should contact Brandon Eckenrode, Managing Director, at 312-231-0258 or Brandon.Eckenrode@ed-foundation.org. Monetary donations can be made online.
The Collision Repair Education Foundation, founded in 1991, is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to supporting collision repair educational programs, schools, and students to create qualified, entry-level employees and connect them with an array of career opportunities. For information on how to donate to programs supported by the Education Foundation, visit us online at: www.CollisionEducationFoundation.org.
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