Enterprise Supports WIN, Ranken Technical College
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Enterprise Supports WIN, Ranken Technical College

Enterprise Rent-A-Car has once again showed its support of the collision repair industry with involvement in Ranken Technical College of St. Louis, Mo., and the Women’s Industry Network (WIN).

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With support from Enterprise, John Helterbrand, national collision engineering program director at Ranken, and his team worked to create a business model for a new approach to collision repair technician training. It launched in January with four schools on board and an expanded roster of partners including GEICO, Progressive, American Family, I-CAR, Chief Automotive Technologies, the Society of Collision Repair Specialists, Ford and Gerber Collision & Glass.

“This is education and the industry coming together to solve a problem,” said Mary Mahoney, vice president, global replacement and leisure division with Enterprise Holdings, an initial program investor and partner. “Neither entity can do it alone.”

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After learning about Ranken’s established hybrid model for collision repair education, Mahoney encouraged colleagues in the industry to spend a day at the school learning more about the model.

The program places students in the classroom for eight weeks, then rotates them into a collision shop for another eight weeks of hands-on training that helps them to learn and progress in a real-world environment. Using this schedule, students learn a different aspect of the four components of collision education – structural, non-structural, collision mechanical, and refinishing – each semester, moving from basic to advanced.

“This process allows us to improve the students’ experience as they enter the industry; it helps them to understand shop culture earlier and master skills learned in the classroom,” said Helterbrand. “We’ve found that students learn much better and faster when they learn in a variety of training environments and when they learn how to perform as part of a team. Collision engineering is the goal. Technicians of the future are engineers.”

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To date, hundreds of shops have signed on to participate in the program. The program covers the cost of a providing a salary to students – to be used for tuition reimbursement – when they’re in the shop setting.

“It is about changing perception and preparation and moving price off the table,” said Mahoney. “We need to make sure all students have the opportunity to take advantage of this.”

In addition to supporting ongoing improvements to student training and education, Enterprise is also a platinum sponsor of WIN, which also has a vested interest in helping students and young technicians grow and thrive in the industry.

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“Initiatives like this help support a critical component of WIN’s focus, which is our student segment,” said Jenny Anderson, chair of WIN. “WIN is incredibly excited to see this program come to life and provide a refreshed perspective on the opportunities available in our industry.”

For more information about the collision engineering program, visit beacollisionengineer.com.

To learn more about the 2022 WIN sponsorship program, click here.

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