John Yoswick

John YoswickJohn Yoswick is a freelance automotive writer based in Portland, Oregon, who has been writing about the collision industry since 1988. He is the editor of the weekly CRASH Network (for a free 4-week trial subscription, visit www.CrashNetwork.com).

He can be contacted at john@crashnetwork.com 

Thursday, 04 June 2020 14:22

I-CAR Temporarily Converts Some ‘Live’ Classes to Virtual, Offers Discounts

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I-CAR CEO John Van Alstyne announced discounts, added online training and other changes the organization is making to help shops this year. I-CAR CEO John Van Alstyne announced discounts, added online training and other changes the organization is making to help shops this year.


I-CAR is taking a variety of steps to help the industry at this challenging time, CEO John Van Alstyne said during an online presentation in May.

Alstyne acknowledged and apologized for the technical problems and other delays I-CAR has encountered in recent months as it worked to complete a multi-year overhaul of its curriculum, internal IT systems and recognition programs.


As a result of that and fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic, he said, I-CAR has extended renewal dates for many of its 8,359 Gold Class shops and 32,610 Platinum Individuals. Those with renewal dates between last October and April of this year have until July to complete renewal requirements; those with renewal dates between May and September will have until the end of September.


Because I-CAR has halted its live training, including its hands-on welding certification program, through at least mid-June because of the pandemic, Platinum and Gold Class renewals through September will have their welding training and certification requirement deferred to their 2021 renewal date.


As of now, Gold Class and Platinum renewals due in the last quarter of this year are not being extended, and will include the welding training and certification requirements.


Van Alstyne said the more than 20 insurers and automakers whose programs include Gold Class or I-CAR welding training and certification requirements have been informed about these changes.


I-CAR is temporarily offering a number of its “live” courses usually held in classrooms or shops as “virtual” classes; they are still led in real time by an instructor with whom students can interact, but transmitted online instead.


Van Alstyne said I-CAR recognizes the limited seating for many of these classes recently has been “sold out,” and the organization is currently recruiting and training more instructors for those classes. But attendance is limited in order to allow “some level of engagement” between the instructor and students.


“If you have too many students in a ‘virtual’ course, that negates the ability for that instructor to engage with the students,” Van Alstyne said. “So we have to find that happy spot of meeting demand but also being able to complete the learning objectives in an effective manner as well. That’s why we have some caps on those courses.”


He said the previously “live” courses temporarily being offered as “virtual” will convert back to in-person courses in classrooms or shops once I-CAR begins offering live courses again.

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