Students from the Automotive Business School of Canada, their professors, and various leaders in the aftermarket industry congregated at the Horseshoe Resort in Barrie, Ontario for the Automotive Industries Association (AIA) of Canada’s annual Student Aftermarket Day.
As always, the goal of the event was to teach automotive students from Georgian College about some of the varied career opportunities in the Canadian automotive aftermarket. This year in particular, the 100 students in attendance were treated to three panel discussions related to the aftermarket industry – “Aftermarket 101,” “Parallels between the Aftermarket & Dealers,” and “Career Planning.” The students also had the opportunity to network with industry leaders at an expanded 13 booth career fair and test their knowledge of the industry with the ever-popular jeopardy-style game.
As part of this year’s “Best in Class” program, three groups of students made presentations to their peers and the 50 industry leaders in the room during the event. Following the presentations, the industry leaders voted on the best presentation. The winners, Yaroslava Didovyk, Jordan Mofford, and Kahla Phillips, all won iPad minis and have been invited to give their presentation, titled “Marketing the Aftermarket,” at AIA’s Ontario Automotive Service Providers Forum in March 2014.
Overall the day was a glowing success that kept students engaged and excited to share their experiences on Twitter where they chatted about the event, posted pictures, and further strengthened networking connections made throughout the day. Students also had the opportunity to take home some great prizes, including three $500 scholarships donated by AIA’s Ontario Division that were awarded to Laurence Desaulniers, Josephine Duguay, and Tiffany Pascual.
The following day, AIA Canada’s YES Committee hosted its management workshop. The day began with a presentation by industry leader Ed Coates, President of Lordco Auto Parts, who entertained attendees with stories of his company’s success and spoke about Lordco’s growth since it first opened in 1974. In particular he highlighted the importance of supporting and promoting employees from within the organization, rather than stealing talent from other organizations.
Kelly Burnett, President of Calyx Consulting, then took the stage and delivered an engaging workshop on presentation skills that provided the 50 participants with strategies to develop their own unique and professional communications style and taught them how to give presentations that connect with their audiences.
“I can’t say enough how important it is to engage the future leaders of our industry and to equip them with the tools and know-how they will need to take the reins,” said Marc Brazeau, President and CEO, AIA Canada. “By attracting new talent to the industry and working to ensure the success of our young executives, these two events are an important part of ensuring the future health and prosperity of our industry.”
Thanks to everyone who attended and made this year’s Student Aftermarket Day and YES Workshop great successes! Be sure to check AIA’s Facebookpage for photos from the events in the coming days!