KSI Auto Parts has contributed over $250,000 in financial and in-kind support for collision repair schools through the Collision Repair Education Foundation. KSI contributed $25,000 to support the Foundation last year and initiated a program to donate parts to collision school programs. Through the parts donation program, they have contributed $240,000 in parts to schools. The monetary contribution assists the Education Foundation’s ability to offer collision school tool and equipment grants and student scholarships across the U.S.
At many schools, students have to practice on parts that have been in use for many years and practiced upon by previous students. The parts donations by KSI Auto Parts help students work on parts for newer vehicles that they are more likely to see when they join the collision industry workforce.
According to Joe Pantano, an auto collision repair instructor with Bergen County Technical Schools in Paramus, N.J., the donations helped him provide his students with a vastly improved learning experience.
“Prior to receiving this very generous donation from KSI, our students were using the same parts over and over again for years. As you can imagine, the parts were pretty worn out. The new parts allow us to have each student practice his or her skills individually as opposed to bringing in an entire vehicle, taking up a large amount of shop space,” said Pantano. “Overall these parts have made a tremendous improvement in the learning by providing quality repairs and showing the students that the industry does think about helping future technicians.”
KSI Auto Parts CEO, Christopher Patti commented, “As KSI continues to grow and pursue its long-term growth strategy we want to make sure that we become a more active participant within industry. We are excited to partner with the CREF through these donations and look forward to building a stronger partnership over the years that will continue to benefit the students in these programs for years to come.”
Collision Repair Education Foundation Executive Director Clark Plucinski said, “KSI Auto Parts’ support for both the Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF) and collision schools helps improve the training and preparation entry-level employees receive prior to starting their career in the industry. School collision repair programs need the industry’s support to graduate qualified and properly trained students. On behalf of the schools, students, and instructors that will benefit from this support, we thank KSI Auto Parts for their support.”
Collision repair facilities, insurance companies and suppliers interested in supporting school grants should contact Education Foundation Director of Development Brandon Eckenrode at (312) 231-0258 or Brandon.Eckenrode@ed-foundation.org.