|Staff, students, and partners were at Toronto's Metro Hall today for the AYCE Career Fair.|
By Melissa Hayes
Toronto, Ontario -- August 18, 2014 -- AYCE Employment Services held its 4th annual Auto Body Collision and Damage Repair Pre-apprenticeship Career Fair to help connect this yearâ€™s graduating class with prospective employers.
Located at Metro Hall on August 18, the fair allowed 2014 Centennial College Level 1 students to meet with local collision repair shop owners with the goal of obtaining apprenticeships.
Marc Tremblay, co-ordinator of AYCE Employment Servicesâ€™ Pre-Apprenticeship Training for Autobody Collision and Damage Repair program says that the fairâ€™s underlying purpose is to ensure his students are placed into the workforce by Friday, adding that such an accomplishment is the highlight of his profession.
â€œThis is our way of contributing to the trade, and giving new, young hands to support the shops that are looking for someone. Any time that these guys succeed, for me itâ€™s a personal success,â€ he says. â€œThis group here, I canâ€™t say enough about them; the passion and dedication that theyâ€™ve shown and how much theyâ€™ve sacrificed to get to this point today. Theyâ€™ve worked hard.â€
Fix Auto Toronto Centreâ€™s Helmer Gonzales, who was in attendance, says collision facilities in general are on the lookout for new blood as the industry ages and new skills are in high demand. While he is a newcomer to the fair, he says he understands the value behind its mission.
â€œThis is the first time Iâ€™ve participated in this fair, in particular, but I have hired people in the past from Centennial College,â€ he says. â€œI hired someone over 10 years ago, and itâ€™s worked out very well for me, so I do know the benefits of getting them when theyâ€™re just freshly coming out, eager to work.â€
Other industry stakeholders present included Assured Collision Repair Professionals, C.I.I.A., the Ontario College of Trades, Awin, Wilson Niblett Performance, Brimell Group and 427 Auto Collision.
Tremblay says having the participation of so many members of the industry helps to change the direction of his studentsâ€™ lives.
â€œOur program seems to be evolving, getting better and better, especially with support from the industry,â€ he says.
â€œI want to thank the collision industry for all theyâ€™ve given us over the years, without them, these fairs would never be possible. Theyâ€™ve given donations, theyâ€™ve given job opportunities and they just continue to give and give, and it makes it easier for us to want to continue this program.â€