I-CAR - Education, Knowledge and Solutions for Collision Repair Industry



Apply your Classroom Talents as a Part-Time Instructor to Industry

02/04/2019 by Val D'Anna

At the end of the school day, many educators leave the high schools and community colleges where they teach collision repair and go right back into the classroom to teach I-CAR® courses to industry students. Educators already represent a major segment of I-CAR’s part-time instructor workforce, and we’d like to sign up more. This blog shines a spotlight on several of these multi-tasking educators who offer valuable insights about the benefits of their double roles.
Educators may have 10, 20 or even more years of industry experience, but every year they’ve been away from the body shop business, technology has been marching on. Working as an I-CAR instructor can help fill in the gap from how things were done before, when you last worked in industry, to how they’re done today.
“I learn new technologies as they come to the industry,” says Jacob Standley, University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College educator and I-CAR instructor.
Working as an I-CAR instructor “helps keep the educator up-to-date, which is becoming increasingly more difficult in our industry,” says Chris Shepherd of Caddo Career in Louisiana. “It also takes the relationship you have with your local market to another level.” Shepherd expands the breadth of his knowledge by teaching a variety of industry courses, including subjects such as estimating, where his background is less extensive. “I spent more time preparing for some of the mechanical damage analysis programs to be confident the students received the training they deserve. I strive to be the most informed person in the room on the subject I'm teaching.”
For Franklin (Tennessee) High School educator Stanley Russell, being an I-CAR instructor “adds to my credibility with my (school) students. They know they are learning from someone who is ‘in the industry’ and has the most up-to-date knowledge.”
Cal DeHaas finds his work as an I-CAR instructor benefits his students at North Idaho College. “Your school’s collision repair program will get better because of the challenges you face in your industry classes and the feedback you get from your industry students.”
The transition from teaching technical school students to working technicians was easier than DeHaas expected. “The two roles complement each other in more ways than I first thought,” he says. Having to simplify explanations for community college students helps DeHaas give clear instruction to industry students. “You need to keep the message simple for industry students as well and not teach above your audience.” If industry and PDP-EE courses he teaches happen to overlap, “it’s a real bonus because you’ve already prepared and have built props.”
A bonus for Standley is that graduates of his program at the University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College turn up in his industry classes. Being an I-CAR instructor brings Jacob a special satisfaction of seeing where his former school students landed – happily employed in the trade he prepared them for – and taking them to the next level of their skills development.
A common reason educators seek extra work is to supplement their income. As a part-time I-CAR instructor, you will have control over your schedule and how much you work. Russell advises new instructors to “Start out with a couple of classes, then add more as your time and confidence level allows.” He says industry students will make up their mind “in the first 10 seconds whether you’re a professional. If you’re not prepared for class, they may call you out.” Russell uses humor and humility to build rapport. “I tell them I’m not there to prove how much I know, but to help them any way I can.”
Shepherd encourages educators to “help our industry excel! As educators, we already are leaders in our industry. Become an I-CAR instructor to benefit both yourself and your local industry.”
View Instructor Job Application: https://recruiting.paylocity.com/recruiting/jobs/Details/71297/I-CAR/Part-Time-Instructor