[l to r]: Georgian College President and CEO MaryLynn West-Moynes, Automotive Industries Association of Canada Board Chair Tony Canade, and third-year automotive student Josephine Duguay officially cut the ribbon to open the new Aftermarket Business Lounge in Georgian College’s Automotive Business School of Canada.(Georgian College/Doug Crawford)
Together, the Automotive Business School of Canada [ABSC] and the Automotive Industries Association [AIA] of Canada have built an entrepreneurial ecosystem at Georgian College that will nurture student innovation in the automotive aftermarket industry. The new Aftermarket Business Lounge – created with a $250,000 donation from the AIA last year – was officially opened today with AIA members in attendance.
Through the transformation of the physical space in the ABSC lobby, use of technology and curriculum development, ABSC students will learn about the automotive aftermarket industry and its numerous career opportunities.
The new Aftermarket Business Lounge is a dedicated space for students to work on collaborative projects and to learn more about the automotive aftermarket. Features include staged seating, a pop-up media screen that can be used for student presentations and demonstrations, and a SMART board loaded with information specific to the AIA and automotive aftermarket industry, which has touch screen capability.
Jean-François Champagne, AIA president, says the new change maker space will inspire the next generation of industry leaders and entrepreneurs to shape the sector’s bright and prosperous future.
“AIA Canada and its members are very proud to support Georgian College’s fundraising efforts,” says Champagne. “The Aftermarket Business Lounge in the Automotive Business School of Canada is a wonderful place for future leaders in the Canadian automotive aftermarket industry to come together to learn and work on projects that will change the way the industry does business in the not-so-distant future.”
Georgian president and CEO MaryLynn West-Moynes says the college is lucky to have the Association as a major donor and champion.
“This innovative space was designed to provide maximum flexibility for our students to share their entrepreneurial ideas, socialize and think creatively,” says West-Moynes. “Spaces like this are crucial to the student experience and fostering a sense of community, connectedness and collaboration.”
ABSC student Josephine Duguay says the space is already being well-used.
“The Aftermarket Business Lounge has allowed me and my classmates to work on school assignments in an environment that is a reflection of the industry we’re going into,” says Duguay. “It gives us our own space and the chance to work with each other on problems and case studies specific to the automotive aftermarket industry.”
AIA’s donation was made in support of Georgian’s fundraising campaign, The Power of Education: Transforming the Student Experience.
Since the Automotive Business School of Canada was established 31 years ago, the automotive aftermarket has grown into a $19.4 billion industry employing 420,000 people. More and more automotive graduates are seeking careers in the industry and the new Aftermarket Business Lounge will inform students about the many exciting opportunities that exist within it.
Georgian College offers the only Honours Bachelor of Business Administration – Automotive Management degree and Automotive Business diploma in Canada. Graduates of these unique programs secure great jobs in many sectors of the automotive industry, including aftermarket, dealerships, finance and insurance, remarketing, corporate head office, fleet management, marketing and advertising, and event management.