CARSTAR Auto Body Repair Experts returned to the 48th Annual SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference where they helped educate, guide and evaluate the next generation of auto body repair professionals.
SkillsUSA is a national organization of students, teachers and industry, working together to ensure America has a skilled work force. Quality career and technical education are the centerpiece of the SkillsUSA conference where more than 15,000 students, teachers, education leaders, and representatives from more than 1,100 national corporations, trade associations, businesses and labor unions participated in the event.
Each year, the annual SkillsUSA Championships, the national-level competition for public high school and college/postsecondary technical students enrolled in career and technical education programs, visits Kansas City, where CARSTAR is headquartered. Members of CARSTAR including the corporate team and local store owners were on hand to participate as technical directors and judges during the Championships.
Bob Keith, Senior Director of Education and Training for CARSTAR, is in his 10th year of attending and participating in the conference. Keith is part of the National Technical Committee in the structural analysis segment of the Championships. He establishes the competition standards, sets up the competition segment, runs the competition and then takes down the segment once the competition is over.
Keith believes the conference is an invaluable part of finding the future talent necessary to sustain the quality of the auto body repair industry.
"SkillsUSA puts the need for properly trained and dedicated young men and women in the spotlight,” said Keith. “As CARSTAR depends on these highly skilled workers for its success, it is a natural fit for us to be involved not just on the national level but also on the local level."
Along with Keith, Stacy Bartnik, Vice President of Field Services for CARSTAR Auto Body Repair Experts, Brett and Dan Bailey, of A&B CARSTAR of Riverside, MO, and Gerald Wicklund of Wicklunds CARSTAR Collision Center in Liberty, MO, were also on hand for the conference as judges in the plastic bumper repair competition. Other segments judged by members of the CARSTAR team were the refinish competition and the structural and welding segments.