Paducah. Ky., resident Brandon Gossett is the first student at West Kentucky Community and Technical College (WKCTC) to receive I-CAR Pro Level 1 certification in painting and refinishing.
Gossett’s accomplishment of receiving the industry-recognized certification was announced during a Nov. 16 ceremony naming the Collision Repair Technology Classroom at WKCTC in memory of B.A. Hamilton.
Hamilton, a local businessman and founder of the collision repair technology program at WKCTC, died on Jan. 26 at the age of 79.
Craig Dickerson, Collision Repair Technology program coordinator and part-time I-CAR instructor, said the program, which Hamilton founded in 1962, continues to be an instrumental part of student success.
“We want to be a stepping stone to a better career for these students,” Dickerson told the audience at the Hamilton dedication. “We want our graduates to be successful. And we want to provide the necessary tools to make that possible.”
With that in mind, WKCTC’s Collision Repair Technology program recently adopted the I-CAR curriculum to ensure that students are kept abreast of ongoing changes in OEM technology, materials, manufacturing capabilities and standards.
WKCTC collision students learn about the constant technological changes within the industry and how it now is necessary for collision repair technicians to become skilled in plastic repair, aluminum repair, welding and the application of waterborne materials such as basecoats and primers.
Hands-on training is provided by a certified National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) master collision repair and refinish technician and meets National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF) standards.
Dickerson said he has qualified to teach each of the more than 30 classes in the I-CAR curriculum by successfully completing an I-CAR technical evaluation.
“We’re a NATEF-accredited program so there’s a crosswalk with this curriculum that shows where each one of the tasks required by NATEF for us to teach are covered by these classes,” he said.
Before the curriculum was added at WKCTC, getting the I-CAR training and certification would require students to travel outside their communities, Dickerson said.
“We’re able to offer this curriculum to them here to help them in gaining employment, so it’s a cost saving for them,” Dickerson added. “Realistically, if they were receiving this training after they were employed, their employer would probably be paying for the training themselves. It just makes them more marketable as a technician. It’s something really good to put on their resume – that they already have $4,000 to $5,000 worth of training.”
For more information about WKCTC’s Collision Repair Technology program, contact Dickerson at [email protected] or (270) 534-3414.