Local news stories affecting the auto body industry in Arizona, Utah, Arkansas, Colorado, Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Louisiana
La Feria, TX, native Victoria Ramirez has always loved working with cars, which is why she made the decision to enroll at Texas State Technical College in 2016.
“My family and friends are very supportive of me attending technical school and pursuing collision repair,” she said. “TSTC was the obvious choice since it’s close to home.”
Ramirez already had an automotive certificate that she earned from TSTC in the summer of 2014, but she wanted to expand her education even further.
“I decided I didn't want to only learn the mechanical side,” Ramirez said. “I wanted to know how to return vehicles to pre-accident condition.”
Ramirez added that she especially wanted to learn about refinishing.
“I think refinishing is a work of art, and I’ve always loved art,” she explained.
Ramirez said that painting comes naturally to her.
“I’ve really enjoyed learning how to airbrush color, how to use candy colors, and how to pin stripe,” she said.
Ramirez has also competed in the national SkillsUSA competition in Louisville, KY, where her team finished in sixth place.
“The SkillsUSA competition was challenging, but we put on our best show,” she said.
Ramirez is also a member of the auto body club at her TSTC.
“I’d like to thank my instructors, Mr. J. Vasquez and Mr. Cantu, for supporting me and showing me their knowledge of the auto collision industry,” Ramirez added. “My three sons, Julien, Moses and Matthew, are also a huge inspiration to me. They make me want to be better for them.”
Despite her dedication to the craft and support from family and instructors, Ramirez said she still faces a specific adversity in the field---a common theme at technical colleges across the country.
“Being a woman in a male-dominated industry has been very challenging,” Ramirez said. “Others think that because I’m a woman, I won’t be able to get the job done or that I don’t know what I’m doing.”
The Texas native said the area she’s from is particularly challenging in this regard, which is why she hopes to leave after graduation in August 2017.
“I plan to move to a bigger city like Houston or Las Vegas to try my luck out there in the industry and work my way to the top of whichever shop I’m hired at,” Ramirez said. “I feel that here in the Rio Grande Valley, there are no jobs for a lady. People say girls are supposed to be behind a desk and not out there getting their hands dirty with paint or grease.”
For more information on TSTC, visit tstc.edu.
Jamal Mills graduated from Central Louisiana Technical Community College in May 2017, and is already working fulltime at Select Motors Auto Restoration & Repair in Ball, LA.
Jerry Seiner Group celebrated the opening of a new Kia dealership at 1530 South 500 West in Salt Lake City, with a ribbon cutting event on Thursday, June 22, 2017.
The new Transwest facility on West Main in Sterling, CO, is big, bold and beautiful. Finishing touches on the audacious 26,500-square-foot, state-of-the-art building located in Sterling aims to be complete July 1, making Transwest Chevrolet Buick a welcome addition to the new and improved city feel of West Main Street.
On July 3, Service King Collision Repair Centers®, a national leader in high-quality automotive collision repair service, announced that the organization has added its seventh Colorado location.
Jody DeVere’s breakout session addressed the importance and value of employing females in the collision repair industry.
Among the three breakout sessions offered on Tuesday afternoon during WIN's 2017 Educational Conference was "Why Is It So Important to Attract, Hire and Retain Women Employees?" presented by Jody DeVere, CEO of AskPatty.com.
Destiny Armendariz worked at her father’s custom paint shop before taking auto collision classes in school.
Destiny Armendariz is not your average teenager. Apart from playing football as a middle linebacker at Kingwood Park High School, she will begin her third year of collision and refinishing courses in the fall.
Brighton Fire Rescue battled a fire that consumed a tire shop, sounding off loud pops believed to be tires exploding and sending dark plumes into the sky on June 2, 2017.
Brighton Fire Rescue battled a fire the evening of June 2, that gutted a multi-business building as several explosions kept firefighters from entering the blazing structure. Widespread flames shot high into the sky and a black plume of smoke was visible across the city.
Caliber Collision teammates celebrate the opening of the company’s500th location in Ft. Worth, Texas.
On June 2, Caliber Collision Centers celebrated a major milestone in the company's history with the opening of its 500th location in Ft. Worth, Texas.
A Lincoln MKZ equipped with patented Ranger technology navigates cones at Southwest Research (Photo Credit: LENNON MALDONADO)
A Lincoln MKZ glides easily through a tight figure eight of cones on Southwest Research Institute's San Antonio, TX Campus.