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Air Conditioning certification for Nova Scotia Auto Techs!

in August 2009 the NSCC and the Automotive Human Resource Sector Council set out to offer Air-conditioning / CFC certification to the mobile air-conditioning and Mobile refrigeration sectors for all locations in Nova Scotia.

The success of this venture has lead to over 100 Nova Scotia service technicians successfully completing the Heating Refrigeration Air-conditioning Institute (HRAI) course and passing a federal certification test with a better than 75%. “I would like to say that in the last month to see this many technicians take part in obtaining their certification and the emphasis on continuing education through direct contact with associations will help keep our industry strong” says Dave Giles, AST Business Development Facilitator for Nova Scotia Community College.

The participants that attended did not only include automotive service technicians but also Collision Repair Technicians, Heavy Equipment Technicians, Truck and Transport Technicians and even some parts suppliers sent people for their certification. The Nova Scotia Department of Environment that enforces the regulations that deal with ozone depleting chemicals was particularly impressed with the response of the automotive industry in attending these certification programs. The course is based on Environment Canada’s “Code of Practice for Reducing CFC Emissions in Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Systems.”

The course and the Participants Manual supplied, deal with environmentally correct equipment design, proper handling of CFC/HCFC/HFC’s and will prepare the participants for complying with provincial regulations covering refrigeration and air conditioning systems. Participants who attend the course and successfully achieve a mark of 75% or better on the exam will receive certification in the form of an Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) card. The NSCC appreciates the support and promotion from the Automotive HR Sector Council for Industry skills upgrading training provided by the college. The success of this initiative will undoubtedly lead to more training opportunities in the future.

For further information on future training opportunities and to ensure you receive important Automotive Industry communications contact Shannon Smith, Executive Director of ASC at 1-877-860-3802, fax 902-465-5734, or email


Uni-Select Atlantic hosts installer appreciation events!

Uni-Select Atlantic kicked off a summer of installer appreciation events at Riverside International Speedway in Antigonish, Nova Scotia on July 18th.

Originally scheduled for Saturday evening, the race was at first delayed and then postponed until Sunday due to inclement weather. That still did not stop the 150 plus installers and Uni-Select members at the Uni-Select VIP tent from enjoying a BBQ and entertainment from none other than Jim Lahey and Randy from the hit TV series “The Trailer Park Boys."

The second installer appreciation event took place on July 22nd in Saint John, NB. Over 50 installers and members enjoyed a scenic Saint John River cruise on-board the MV Voyager II, an authentic Mississippi river boat.

The third event of the summer took place on August 14th in Shediac, NB. Installers and members enjoyed a lobster cruise with Shediac Bay Cruises. The trip was a learning experience as well as a culinary one, as folks learned about lobster fishing and even hauled in a lobster trap. The fourth and final event took place on September 25th in Charlottetown, PEI at the Confederation Center. Here members and installers enjoyed the Disco Cirque musical theatre spectacular.

The show was a fantastic combination of disco and the modern circus. “Uni-Select would like to thank everyone who participated and we look forward to next year’s installer appreciation events” - Kelly Thompson, Products and Promotions Manager, Uni-Select Atlantict!


Keizer Collision in Lower Sackville, NS grand opening

Keizer’s Collision Centre celebrated the Grand Opening of their new facility in Middle Sackville on August 20th. John Keizer started the business 34 years ago and thanks the community for their continued support. The new facility is a state of the art 10,000 square foot building located at 1682 Sackville Drive that now has their automotive repair, as well as collision repair all under one roof. They have a staff of 20 in this very efficient building working with the latest technology and training. Dale Keizer manages the Collision and Mechanical centre while John focuses on Keizer’s Auto Sales. The grand opening was a huge success with an excellent turnout from customers, suppliers, and industry peers. The ribbon cutting included John Keizer, Flavio Battilana, the Chief Operating Officer with CSN, and was cut by Matt Whynott, the local MLA.


NS auto industry certification

Since 2000, the NS Automotive Sector Council has worked with Industry to address industry’s critical workforce development issues. On behalf of automotive employers, the Council provides leadership for recruitment, improved employee retention, certification and partnership development.

Bob Greenwood

The ASC has been instrumental in moving the industry towards certification, and has been working with Industry, Collision Repairers, Automotive Glass Installers, Insurance Appraisers, Transmission Technicians, and Automotive Service Technicians to this end. The Collision Repair Association of Nova Scotia and the Automotive Human Resource Sector Council submitted an application to the Apprenticeship Board to specify the trade as compulsory certified. On August 4th, 2009, Motor Vehicle Body Repair (Metal and Paint) was specified as a compulsory certified trade in Nova Scotia.

Dale Crawford A/Director, NS Apprenticeship Training states, “In order to build the number of journeypersons in the trade, in October 2007 the Department of Labour and Workforce Development began providing examination preparation courses and allowing those who qualify to write the exam to do so at no cost. Since that time, more than 100 motor vehicle body repairers have written the exam, with an 88 percent pass rate. The fees will continue to be waived until August 4th, 2011. Although compliance and awareness initiatives will continue; an enforcement strategy will not be implemented until August 2011. This will allow for people who are already working in the trade with time to prepare and write the exam. Other initiatives the Sector Council is working on include

  • CFC training around the province
  • Part-time Studies at NSCC
  • Bob Greenwood, professional development
  • CARS, Labour Market Update
  • Industry Safety Training
  • Essential Skills Training for small business

For further information contact Shannon Smith, Executive Director of NS Automotive Sector Council at 1-877-860-3805 or email her here.

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