In 1991, several collision repair industry leaders worked with I-CAR (The Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair) to create the I-CAR Education Foundation – a charitable organization charged with addressing critical shortage of qualified and well-trained entry-level employees.
For almost 20 years, the I-CAR Education Foundation supported career and technical school and college collision repair programs through curriculum development, sales, and support and philanthropic scholarships and grants. In 2008, the Education Foundation moved the curriculum and training functions to I-CAR and focused its mission entirely on charitable support for schools and instructors. That year, the organization provided over $1.7 million in grants to education programs nationwide. In 2010, the I-CAR Education Foundation changed its name to the Collision Repair Education Foundation.
The name and logo change was reflective of the organization’s new mission and vision of supporting the future of the collision industry by enriching opportunities for collision repair students and schools. The Collision Repair Education Foundation today is singularly focused on grant and scholarship support of high school and post-secondary collision repair programs. Our organization is 100 percent funded by charitable donations and we can meet the needs of schools and students only through the generous support of the entire collision industry. Our new name is reflective of the fact that collision education programs need the support of the entire collision industry.
The Collision Repair Education Foundation and I-CAR continues their partnership in supporting education for the entire industry. I-CAR is the obvious subject-matter expert on the education and training needs of the collision employee – from the student to the entry-level employee to the most experienced technician. Collision repair schools need I-CAR to provide the best training methods for their future collision repair technicians; and schools also need funding and donations of the right tools, materials and equipment so that instructors have the proper tools to teach their students.
The Collision Repair Education Foundation’s overall goal is to support the pre-employment segment of the collision industry. The Education Foundation’s funding focus is on secondary and post-secondary career and technical school and college collision programs and their students. The scholarships and grants distributed enhance the education experience for students by better preparing them to understand the new technology and gain the skills necessary to be a successful collision industry member. Collision repair businesses are then able to hire these well-trained students as productive, efficient, and capable employees from day one on the job.