Sandhills Community College to Offer Collision Engineering Program

Sandhills Community College to Offer Collision Engineering Program

The Collision Engineering program aims to help fill the more than 110,000 collision technician job openings expected through 2027.

Enterprise Mobility, through the Enterprise Mobility Foundation, announced that Sandhills Community College in Pinehurst, N.C., will offer the innovative Collision Engineering program as part of its existing Collision Repair and Refinishing Technology program.

Partnering with schools across the country, the Collision Engineering program aims to help fill the more than 110,000 collision technician job openings expected through 2027. Founded by the Enterprise Mobility Foundation and Ranken Technical College in St. Louis, the program is designed in collaboration with the automotive industry and educational institutions to facilitate lifelong learning for the future leaders of collision repair. Through a defined two-year apprenticeship model, students receive real-world experience by working alongside industry experts while also earning their associate degree. This unique model provides students the opportunity to earn an income while completing their training.

“We always want the best for our students, and the opportunities the Collision Engineering program offers are unmatched,” said Brian Garner, chair and instructor of the Sandhills Transportation Department. “The program’s unique model will offer eight weeks in class, then eight weeks at a paid apprenticeship with a local employer, putting the skills learned in the classroom to work. This will help change students’ lives with a great start to a great career in the automotive collision industry.”

Sandhills is the first college in the Southeast to offer the program. The Collision Engineering program is also available at Ranken Technical College in St. Louis; College of Lake County in Grayslake, Ill.; Contra Costa College in San Pablo, Calif.; Texas State Technical College in Waco, Texas; Parkland College in Champaign, Ill.; and Metropolitan Community College in Omaha, Neb.

“We look forward to expanding the reach of our program in North Carolina to streamline industry advancements within local communities across the U.S.,” said John Helterbrand, national program director of Collision Engineering. “Our approach is to address the talent shortage regionally, starting with the colleges we serve, with the aim of improving training methods by bringing the industry and educational institutions together through a collaborative partnership.”

The Collision Engineering program’s unique two-year apprenticeship model not only increases the number of qualified technicians to address the ongoing industry technician shortage and skills gap, but also offers advanced education and ever-expanding career opportunities for participating students.

“As a leading provider of mobility solutions, Enterprise Mobility recognizes the need to fill tens of thousands of jobs at collision repair businesses due to the ongoing technician shortage and skills gap,” said Mary Mahoney, vice president of Enterprise Mobility. “As the program expands, we continue to work closely with industry partners to ensure our training meets the latest trends and advancements of today’s vehicles, enhances students’ education and career prospects, and opens doors for them faster.”  

Sandhills’ Collision Repair and Refinishing Technology program is currently accepting applications for the first cohort of Collision Engineering students, with classes beginning later this year. For more information regarding the program, visit beacollisionengineer.com or contact Brian Garner at [email protected].

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