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Image Credit: Saskatchewan Polytechnic
Image Credit: Saskatchewan Polytechnic

Sask Polytech student project published in prestigious car calendar

Auto Body and AST student restoration project featured in 2016 BASF calendar


January 5, 2016 - Car enthusiasts across North America will get a glimpse at the restoration work completed by Saskatchewan Polytechnic students when they flip their 2016 BASF calendars to October. They'll set eyes on a beautifully restored 1955 Mercury M100 antique truck that was just one of many vehicles students in the Auto Body Technician and Automotive Service Technician (AST) certificate programs laboured over the last year.

"A training institution having their vehicle showcased in the calendar is quite an accomplishment for students who have very little experience in the trade," says Scott Kucharyshen, program head of the Auto Body Technician program. "It's not only a first for the program - it's a first for me and my staff. It's a very proud moment to showcase the level and quality of training we do for the students."

Auto Body Technician students rust repaired the truck's cab; dent repaired the roof, doors and hood; and subsequently repaired and refinished the entire truck, inside and out. A new box and front fenders were installed, the tailgate was extensively repaired and the powertrain was refinished. AST students and apprentices installed the engine and transmission, connected everything and established it was running properly.

Headquartered in Germany, BASF's products include a range of pigments, resins and additives used in vehicle refinishing. Vehicles refinished with the BASF paint line (such as the 1955 Mercury) can be entered into the competition for publication in the calendar. Entries are judged based on: quality finish on the vehicle, technical difficulty of the finish and the artistry and uniqueness of the finish. The twelve vehicles selected for the 2016 calendar come from all over North America and range from a 1935 Ford Coupe from Nova Scotia to a 1972 Buick Riviera from Ontario. 

The calendar feature isn't the only claim to fame for this rare, robin's egg blue truck. It also placed third in the restored truck category at the 2015 Draggins Rod and Custom Car Show.

The Auto Body Technician program is a one-year certificate offered on campus in Saskatoon and Regina. The program provides students with a solid foundation in the knowledge and skills required to work in motor vehicle body repair and refinishing. The Automotive Service Technician program is a one-year certificate offered in Saskatoon and Moose Jaw. Students learn how to diagnose, repair and maintain mechanical and electrical systems in contemporary and classic vehicles.

Students and apprentices in the Auto Body Technician and AST certificate programs work on a variety of vehicles during the academic year. Many of them are late-model vehicles with the latest technologies. Projects like the 1955 Mercury restoration provide them with a well-rounded education. As a result, graduates of both programs are in demand and have a very high employment rate.

Kucharyshen says placing at Draggins and the calendar feature are achievements his students can share with potential employers when they begin applying for jobs. "It's about building their confidence and taking them where they didn't think they could be six months earlier."

About Saskatchewan Polytechnic

Saskatchewan Polytechnic serves 26,000 distinct students through applied learning opportunities at campuses in Moose Jaw, Prince Albert, Regina and Saskatoon, and through extensive distance education opportunities. Programs serve every economic and public service sector. As a polytechnic, the organization provides the depth of learning appropriate to employer and student need, including certificate, diploma and degree programs, and apprenticeship training. Saskatchewan Polytechnic engages in applied research, drawing on faculty expertise to support innovation by employers, and providing students the opportunity to develop critical thinking skills.

About BASF Automotive Refinish

BASF's automotive refinish business makes and markets coatings for the collision repair, commercial fleet and automotive specialty markets. Its paint products are supported by technical training programs, advanced colour information systems and business management and planning tools. For more information visit www.basfrefinish.com

About BASF

BASF Corporation, headquartered in Florham Park, New Jersey, is the North American affiliate of BASF SE, Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF has more than 17,000 employees in North America, and had sales of $20.6 billion in 2014. For more information about BASF's North American operations, visit www.basf.us.

BASF creates chemistry - and have been doing so for 150 years. Their portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products and crop protection products to oil and gas. As the world's leading chemical company, they combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. Through science and innovation, they enable their customers in nearly every industry to meet the current and future needs of society. Their products and solutions contribute to conserving resources, ensuring nutrition and improving quality of life. They have summed up this contribution in their corporate purpose: They create chemistry for a sustainable future. BASF had sales of over €74 billion in 2014 and around 113,000 employees as of the end of the year. Further information on BASF is available on the Internet at www.basf.com.

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