I-CAR has introduced new enhancements to its Welding Training & Certification program, including significant price cuts that aim to save shops money.
“As vehicle structures change in response to CAFE standards, the approaching ‘technical tsunami’ will pose considerable challenges to collision repair professionals as they strive to keep pace for the ultimate benefit of the consumer,” said John Van Alstyne, CEO and president of I-CAR. “To meet these challenges successfully, it will be absolutely critical for every technician who welds to be trained and certified with up-to-date welding skills. This is a key I-CAR priority for 2014, and we’ve updated our program to help the industry accomplish this goal.”
Today, as the major provider of welding training to the collision repair industry, I-CAR estimates that at least two-thirds of technicians who weld lack formal welding training. I-CAR’s welding program enhancements are designed to change that. These changes include:
- New lower pricing that saves shops between 10 and 40 percent or more. Savings increase with each additional technician a shop trains, encouraging shops to train all technicians who weld.
- A new program name – Welding Training & Certification – which more accurately reflects the attributes of the product. These include assessment of the facility’s readiness and capability for proper welding, intensive theory instruction, hands-on training of students tailored to their pre-training skill level, opportunities to practice new skills with instructor coaching and I-CAR’s standardized certification test that confirms technician skill level.
- A newly streamlined registration process that will see continued improvements in 2014.
- Ongoing course updates that will include proper welding techniques for the latest materials, keeping the training experience and skill development relevant to the work required of welding technicians not just today, but also in the future.
I-CAR continues to offer three Welding Training & Certification programs: Aluminum GMA (MIG) Welding – WCA03, Steel GMA (MIG) Welding – WCS03 and Steel Sectioning – SPS05. For all courses, the certification resulting from successfully completing the training will be valid for five years, after which the training and certification will need to be retaken to ensure the student maintains current welding skills.
I-CAR has also announced a new initiative with State Farm through which the insurer will encourage its Select Service network shops to participate in welding training. I-CAR is working on other welding-related initiatives across the industry that are expected to be announced later this year.