October 21, 2017
Minnesota Careers in Auto Repair and Service (MNCARS) is a non-profit organization established in 2016 by the Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Minnesota (AASP-MN). Its sole purpose is to promote careers in the automotive industry, recruit young people into the state’s college-level automotive service and collision repair programs and, ultimately, into industry workplaces. Now 20 months into the initiative, MNCARS is pleased to report progress on a number of fronts…
Developed website, social media presence, marketing materials, counselors kit and other collateral to educate target audiences (“tinkerers”, school counselors and parents) about the career opportunities in today’s automotive service and collision repair industry
Established an industry speaker’s bureau and recruited “student ambassadors” to promote careers in the auto service and collision industry
Presented to middle school and high school automotive students and participated in career and college fairs throughout the state
Activated social media campaign to drive traffic to carcareers.org
Sponsored St. Cloud Times SPARK feature on transportation careers and event at St. Cloud CTC
Distributed introductory materials and career promotion posters to school counselors
Organized World of Wheels Student Day
Attended MN School Counselors Association conference (2015 – 2017)
Exhibited at Back to the 50s (2016 & 2017)
Dan Sjolseth, owner of Superior Service Centers in Eagan and Apple Valley, and chairman of MNCARS, states, “Those of us who have been involved in this effort from the beginning feel like we’re really starting to gain some momentum. Counselors, educators and parents appear to be much more receptive to the idea that a 4-year college degree is not for everyone and that the skilled trades – especially automotive – have a lot to offer: rewarding and varied career paths with high earnings potential in a high-tech, high-demand industry.”
Looking ahead, plans are underway to:
Activate the grassroots army of AASP-MN members at the local level to spread the MNCARS message far and wide
Partner with the MN Transportation Center of Excellence to deploy a career exploration trailer at local events to build interest and provide hands-on experiences related to automotive careers
Continue presentations to high school automotive students and participation in career and college fairs throughout the state
Continue social media engagement to drive traffic to carcareers.org
Begin fundraising necessary to sustain the campaign into the future
Sjolseth added, “It’s going to take the work of the entire industry to keep driving our message home and make a bigger impact. The future of each and every automotive business depends on the availability of skilled technicians and other qualified employees. We encourage all members of the industry to put the resources developed by MNCARS to use in their own backyard to advocate and educate target audiences about the bright outlook for automotive service and collision repair careers and jobs in our state.”
The MNCARS initiative is made possible by the generous contributions of industry organizations and companies. Check out www.carcareers.org and visit the About Us page to see a list of sponsors and supporters. Those who are interested in contributing by volunteering their time or financial support should contact the AASP-MN office at 612-623-1110 or firstname.lastname@example.org.Read More
July 11, 2017
The Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Minnesota (AASP-MN) is pleased to announce scholarship awards totaling $18,000 to help automotive service and collision repair students pay for tuition and tools during the 2017-18 school year. The scholarships are in the amount of $1,000 per student and were made possible by a successful fundraising drive within the AASP-MN membership, as well as a generous donation from the Minnesota State I-CAR Committee.Read More
July 26, 2016
Minnesota Careers in Automotive Repair and Service launches CarCareers.org as central resource for automotive career information
MINNEAPOLIS (June 30, 2016) – Each year, the demand for qualified automotive service and collision repair technicians and other industry employees far exceeds the supply of incoming professionals. To ensure a future workforce to keep Minnesota consumers driving, Minnesota Careers in Automotive Repair and Service (MNCARS) has launched a multifaceted campaign that provides students, parents, teachers and guidance counselors with a better picture of the pathways to success and career opportunities in the automotive industry.
“CarCareers.org will help parents, teachers, influencers and students overcome misperceptions about the automotive industry and attract the qualified job candidates employers desperately need,” said Judell Anderson, executive director of the Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Minnesota, founder and platinum sponsor of MNCARS. “With hundreds of jobs waiting for skilled employees, the time is now to attract new professionals to our technology-driven field.”
The website includes sections on: reasons to pursue an automotive career; facts to counter common misperceptions about the industry; career paths; success spotlights and a depiction of the 21st century automotive service and collision shop to demonstrate the cutting-edge diagnostics and computer-driven technology that is common in today’s shops. Visitors will come away with a better understanding of the advantages that a two-year automotive program offers in getting started in the workforce.
CarCareers.org was developed and will be hosted and managed by Autoshop Solutions, an award-winning web design and Internet marketing agency based in Apex, NC. “We are thrilled to be able to work with MNCARS on this campaign,” says Danny Sanchez, Founder and CEO of Autoshop Solutions. “CarCareers.org will serve as a positive introduction to the industry for thousands of people, and we are proud that we were chosen to help bring the campaign to life.”
Over the next two years, MNCARS will reach audiences by hosting events at schools and community locations for students to get hands-on exposure to car career jobs, developing and promoting media stories that feature local pros and their stories, sharing news coverage of the industry and creating a digital “toolkit” for counselors and teachers that presents accurate, positive information about the industry’s career options.
MNCARS’ first event was “Back to the 50s” on June 17-19 at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds. Information was shared with teens and their parents about the exciting career opportunities that exist in the industry. Attendees were also encouraged to share their favorite photos from the event on Facebook. Information will also be available at the Street Machine Nationals event July 15- 17, also at the fairgrounds. “These events are a great forum to reach car hobbyists and get them thinking about turning their love for cars into a rewarding career,” said Anderson.
Visit www.CarCareers.org to learn more. MNCARS can also be found on Facebook.com/carcareers and on Instagram @carcareers.
About Minnesota Careers in Automotive Repair and Service
Minnesota Careers in Automotive Repair and Service (MNCARS) is a workforce initiative created by a cross-section of automotive industry representatives, including independent repair shops, multiple shop operators, suppliers, technical college administrators and other industry organizations. Its goal is to ensure a future workforce for Minnesota’s automotive service industry by raising awareness and recruiting people into technical college automotive education programs (collision and mechanical) and industry careers. MNCARS will help parents, influencers and students overcome misperceptions of the industry and attract the qualified employees the industry needs.
About Autoshop Solutions
Autoshop Solutions is an award-winning website design and Internet marketing agency based in Apex, NC. Since 2005, Autoshop Solutions has been helping the automotive industry with custom-designed websites and Internet marketing solutions, including Google Adwords, SEO, Social Media, Direct Mail, Custom Video, and more. For three years in a row, 2013, 2014 and 2015, Autoshop Solutions has been named to the Inc 5000 List of America’s Fastest Growing Companies and awarded seven years in a row by AutoInc. in the Top 10 Websites. Stay connected with Autoshop Solutions on Facebook and Twitter, or contact Autoshop Solutions Press email@example.com for more information.
July 26, 2016
The Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Minnesota (AASP-MN) awarded $14,000 in scholarships to help post-secondary automotive students pay for tuition during the 2016-17 school year. The scholarships are in the amount of $1,000 per student and were made possible by a successful fundraising drive within the AASP-MN membership, as well as a generous donation from the Minnesota State I-CAR Committee. All recipients will be entering the second year of a NATEF-certified automotive program based in Minnesota.
Congratulations to this year’s recipients!
Thirty students from 12 schools were eligible for the scholarships. Applications were reviewed by a committee of industry representatives, with consideration given to scholastic achievement, education and career goals, financial need and written recommendations.
The scholarship awards are the centerpiece of AASP-MN’s Automotive Education Fund, which was established to provide financial resources to support automotive students, enhance automotive programs and raise awareness of career opportunities in the independent automotive service industry.
The Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Minnesota (AASP-MN) is an association of nearly 800 independently-owned automotive service businesses and industry suppliers dedicated to improving the state’s automotive service industry and the success of its members.Read More
May 26, 2016
The Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Minnesota (AASP-MN) held its 2016 Annual Meeting and Leadership Conference, April 14, at the Ramada Plaza, Minneapolis. The event, with the theme “Lead the Way,” offered seminars covering topics from effective leadership, industry consolidation, and authentic persuasion to how to increase diagnostic labor sales and improve workflow scheduling. In addition, there were ample opportunities for networking and socializing with industry peers.
Richard Flint kicked off the event with “Mastering the 5 Skills for Effective Leadership,” which explored the traits an individual must possess—and master— to establish true leadership. Brad Mewes of Supplement!, followed with “Help! My Industry is Consolidating,” which explained the state of industry consolidation and the challenges and opportunities that consolidation presents.
During the annual meeting, AASP-MN Lobbyist Kevin Walli gave a brief legislative update, the 2016-17 Board of Directors were introduced, and awards were presented to outgoing board members and other volunteer leaders. In addition, AASP-MN Executive Director Judell Anderson and Office Manager Jodi Pillsbury, were recognized for celebrating 20 and 25 years of service, respectively. After a report on the association’s initiatives, guests were treated to an inspiring keynote by Sam Silverstein, which highlighted the key elements to create a culture that prioritizes and inspires accountability.
Afternoon programming included, “Collision Workflow: Better Scheduling = Greater Success,” presented by Kent Carlson, Collision Resources, “Increase Your Diagnostic Labor Sales,” presented by Steve Taylor, Action Business Solutions, “Building Your Accountable Organization,” presented by Sam Silverstein, and “Authentic Persuasion: Communication That Moves Others to Action,” presented Josh Dye of Convene LLC. Peer-to-peer roundtable discussions wrapped up the day’s educational offerings.
When the seminars were over, attendees enjoyed a happy hour with vendor exhibits displaying everything from business insurance to rental cars. The relaxed environment provided attendees opportunities to network with others and learn about the latest products and services available to the automotive repair industry.
Following happy hour, the fun moved to the industry dinner and comedy show, where attendees were treated to a great dinner and entertainment by Comedian C. Willi Myles. The show, sponsored by Dent Impressions, left everyone in stitches.
In addition to AASP-MN, the following companies were sponsors of the event:
AASP-MN is an association of independently-owned automotive service businesses and industry suppliers dedicated to improving Minnesota’s automotive service industry and the success of its nearly 800 members. For more information, www.aaspmn.orgRead More
October 19, 2015
At a time when companies throughout the industry are struggling to find the level of highly-qualified employees they need now and into the future, the Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Minnesota (AASP-MN) has stepped up to the plate with $50,000 to actually do something about it. The funds will support a campaign designed to feed the pipeline of future employees by changing the narrative about automotive service careers, informing potential students and employees about the number of rewarding opportunities that exist within the automotive industry – AND helping students who have the skills and profile for success explore career decisions in the trade.
This is an effort of a newly-formed group, Minnesota Careers in Automotive Repair and Service – aka MNCARS – of which AASP-MN is a member. MNCARS is made up of a cross-section of industry representatives, including independent repair shops, new car dealers, multiple shop operators (MSOs), suppliers, insurers, technical college administrators and other industry organizations. The goal of MNCARS is to ensure a future workforce for Minnesota’s automotive service industry by raising awareness and recruiting young people into post-secondary automotive education programs (collision and mechanical) and industry careers.
MNCARS has partnered with Risdall, a leading marketing and communications agency, to develop and oversee the two-year campaign. Important elements of the initiative will include:
The AASP-MN Board of Directors identified the availability of a future workforce as a key priority for the association during its strategic planning session in early 2014. Since that time, AASP-MN has dedicated time, money and resources to support various projects and outreach efforts to high school automotive instructors and counselors, as well as scholarships for post-secondary automotive students. “It’s time our industry was intentional about its collective brand as employers,” says Judell Anderson, AASP-MN Executive Director. “It will take a collaborative and unified effort to cut through all the ‘noise’ and overcome the misperceptions about working in the automotive service industry and attract the kind of high-level employees we need. The MNCARS initiative is designed to accomplish just that.”
Sponsorship opportunities are available for those within the industry to support these important efforts. Sponsorship can range from one time or annual pledges, to corporate sponsorships which will include prominent placement and recognition on the MNCARS campaign website. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the AASP-MN website, www.aaspmn.org.Read More