NWACA Hosts Successful 2nd Annual Collision Training Expo

The event was expanded this year from one to two days of hands-on training, panel discussions and a trade show.

Several hands-on classes were held during this year's Collision Training Expo.

The Northwest Auto Care Alliance (NWACA) recently held its second annual Collision Training Expo (CTE) 2024, May 3-4 at Clover Park Technical College in Lakewood, WA.

After a well-attended single-day inaugural event in 2023, organizers expanded it to two days of hands-on training, panel discussions and a trade show.

Micah Strom, collision chair of NWACA and the owner of Modern Collision Rebuild and Service in Bainbridge Island, WA, said attendance increased 20% compared to the first CTE, “which is great for a training event that just started last year.”

He said the third annual CTE is already scheduled for May 2-3, 2025, and the agenda will be announced in the coming months.

“We are excited to see what next year will bring, taking all the feedback from this year and making it even better for next year,” Strom said.

This year, the classes offered included EV training by I-CAR, hands-on collision alignments by Hunter Engineering, hands-on ADAS calibration by Elitek, collision estimating by CCC, hands-on resistance spot welding by Wesco, HR training by DEHR Consulting, financial training by ATI, dent repair and invoicing by Industrial Finishes, a spray efficiency class by PPRC, and an overview of Washington’s Automotive Repair Act by Harber Appraisal.

A Shop Owner Roundtable was held, to bring together managers and owners to share ideas and lessons they have learned over the years.

CTE was established in 2023 because NWACA had hosted a training expo for mechanical shops for 20 years, and felt it was time to offer the same to its collision shop members.

“We started the CTE for our members and for the industry in general, to get some good training out there,” Strom said. “There’s not a lot [of collision training] here in the Northwest, and that’s why we put this together.”

The event is designed for everyone in a collision repair shop, including managers, owners, estimators and technicians, to help them keep up with evolving technology, enhance their skills, improve safety in their workplaces and make sure their shops are meeting state regulations and standards.

Stay tuned to ctetrainingexpo.com for updates on the 2025 event.

All images courtesy of Micah Strom and NWACA.

Abby Andrews

Abby Andrews is the editor and regular columnist of Autobody News.
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