The Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF) and the 3M Automotive Aftermarket Division have announced they will continue to offer the popular 3M Hire Our Heroes scholarship and tool grant awards program in 2019 to assist military servicemembers and their families pursue careers in the collision repair industry.
The two organizations have partnered to offer this program since 2013 in support of America’s veterans and expanding the collision repair industry.
The 3M Hire Our Heroes program has produced over $1.2 million to be used for program scholarships and tool grants for veterans and their families. Over 330 military veterans and their families have received scholarships and grants as a result of the program, according to CollisionWeek.
“Supporting both our industry and our military veterans remains a high priority for us,” said Dale Ross, U.S. marketing operations manager for 3M Automotive Aftermarket Division. “This is our way of showing our gratitude for their service, while helping our industry by preparing what will be great future employees.”
In 2019, each veteran student who benefits from the 3M Hire Our Heroes program will choose $1,500 worth of tools as part of the benefit. Select veteran students will also be eligible for additional $2,000 scholarships. Students graduating in 2019 will be able to select an additional $3,000 in tools upon their graduation and are hired into the industry.
Rebekka Rollison, one of the 2018 program winners, is a Navy veteran and attended Wilkes Community College. Services given to Rollison through the program tremendously helped her prepare to be able to work in the collision industry, she said.
“Now that I actually have a job in the collision industry, being equipped for the task can set you above others competing for jobs,” Rollison said. “Having the appropriate tools when you start out helped improve my production time, which is huge, and achieve the best professional outcome.”
Both organizations worked hard to improve the provided collision repair education opportunities for military members, hosting the 3M Hire Our Heroes 500 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway to raise funding.
This event added $150,000 to the 3M Hire Our Heroes program.