AkzoNobel and Collision Repair Education Foundation announce new educational materials to support Sustainability Challenge Grant

AkzoNobel Automotive & Aerospace Coatings (A&AC) and the Collision Repair Education Foundation have announced the availability of new educational resources to support the collision repair industry’s first Sustainability Challenge Grant. The grant, introduced for the 2013-2014 school year, aims to encourage awareness and thinking about sustainability among students at secondary and post-secondary schools who are preparing for a career in the collision repair industry. Applications will be accepted through December 18, 2013.

The educational resources include a video series that presents principles of sustainability in an engaging, informative format, as well as guidelines for instructors, a printable poster, and an easy-to-complete, downloadable entry form. All materials are available on the Collision Repair Education Foundation’s website.

The video series, developed by Mike Shesterkin, general manager of What’s Next LLC, a sustainability consulting firm, and produced by M-1 Studios, is designed for viewing in a classroom or independent study. The four-part video series takes a creative approach to delivering an essential message, as a noted — yet somewhat absent-minded — professor interacts with his visiting niece to address these topics:

The Mega Trends. Teams learn about the sustainability imperative, framed by the four megatrends of population growth, demand for affluence, scarcity of resources, and global climate change.

Concept and Leaders presents fundamental concepts in the sustainable business movement, as well as practical examples of the ways sustainable principles have been applied to collision repair facilities.

Systems Thinking and Continuous Improvement Tools provides a definition of systems thinking and how continuous improvement tools can be used to identify a collision repair facility’s environmental and social aspects, and how they impact their surroundings.

Leadership and Teamwork. Teams learn about leadership and the importance of making a commitment to the success of a team, as well as Dr. W. Edward Deming’s Plan, Do, Check, Act model and system of profound knowledge.

Collision repair instructors and their students are encouraged to view and discuss each of the four ten-minute segments to learn about sustainability, principles of continuous improvement, and working as teams before developing a grant proposal to improve processes in their schools’ body shop or the improve how the shop interacts with its community or impacts its environment.

“The future of our industry depends on a well-trained, qualified workforce and the development of sustainable business practices,” said Clark Plucinski, Executive Director of the Collision Repair Education Foundation. “We are encouraged by the interest and enthusiasm shown by students in generating positive ideas to improve processes in their schools’ collision repair shops and its impact on the environment.”

The Sustainability Education Challenge Grant was established by AkzoNobel with $50,000 of funding and will be administered in collaboration with the Collision Repair Education Foundation.  Schools and students seeking an individual award of up to $10,000 will be asked to submit their formal recommendations for programs or activities promoting sustainability in the collision repair industry to the Collision Repair Education Foundation by December 18, 2013. The grants will be awarded in January 2014.

For more information about the AkzoNobel Sustainability Challenge Grant, please contact Melissa Marscin, Director of Grant Programs, Collision Repair Education Foundation, at 847-463-5282, send an email to Melissa.Marscin@ed-foundation.org or visit Sustainability Challenge Grant.