CARSTAR recently introduced the collision repair industry to a group of remarkable seventh-grade students who were part of the San Francisco 49ers Foundation's STEM Leadership Institute.
The institute's six-year curriculum works to prepare students with high academic potential for careers in STEM through more than 300 extra academic hours each school year.
The 49ers STEM Leadership Institute, launched in 2014 in partnership between the 49ers Foundation, Chevron, Silicon Valley Education Foundation and the Santa Clara Unified School District, hosts five cohorts of scholars totaling 300 students enrolled in the seventh, eighth, ninth, 10th and 11th grade program across Cabrillo Middle School and Santa Clara High School.
Presenting to more than 120 students, the CARSTAR team highlighted how the disciplines of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) are prevalent in the collision repair industry. From the initial engineering of the vehicle to the technology embedded within it, collision repairers must navigate more than most expect.
“Technologies like scanning and 3D measuring have been created to help us perform repairs just as advanced as the vehicles themselves,” said Rob Zimmerman, VP of business development, CARSTAR Chilton Auto Body. “Vehicle manufacturers have never been this innovative, and there is so much room for STEM leaders to emerge in the collision repair field as a response to these new and amazing technologies in our cars.”
Designed with more than just transportation in mind, vehicles are equipped with new capabilities that keep consumers safe and comfortable. Features such as lane departure warnings that prevent drivers from drifting out of their lanes are becoming standard. When collision centers repair vehicles, they must consider these technologies during the repair process to ensure the initial engineering remains intact and customers are safe when they drive away in their vehicle.
“It is an exciting time for our field with more advancement coming as the automotive industry is expected to change more in the next couple of years than it has over the past several decades,” said Hannah Ross, senior director of marketing, CARSTAR. “CARSTAR has a proprietary operations EDGE Performance Platform as well as an online library of training materials in CARSTAR University to help keep us ahead of these ever-evolving technologies, and we were excited to share a small bit of this with these incredibly intelligent students.”