Pathfinder Tech

Collision Repair & Refinishing


Grade 9

  • Shop Safety Equipment & Procedures
  • Career Opportunities/Paths & Shop Types (Refer to Career Tree)
  • Hand Tool Knowledge
  • Power Tool Knowledge
  • Vehicle Identification & body style knowledge
  • Vehicle Construction
  • Fasteners
  • Introduction to Welding and Cutting
  • Introduction to Painting
  • SP/2 Collision Safety Training Course

Grade 10

  • Surface Preparation & Abrasives Used
  • Types of body fillers & minor dent repair techniques
  • Undercoats Knowledge
  • Types of paint finishes
  • Spray gun knowledge, basic spraying set-up and spraying techniques
  • Introduction to I-CAR Student Professional Development Program
  • Introduction to Diagnostic Scan Tool Utilization
  • Welding & cutting knowledge continued(including MIG, Oxy-Acetylene, Squeeze Type Resistance Spot Welding, Plasma Cutting, Aluminum welding)
  • Basic Metallurgy (Understanding metal properties) 
  • SP/2 Collision Safety/Employability Training Course

Grade 11

  • Structural parts damage repair methods
  • Structural welding techniques
  • Metal Fabrication Techniques ( Bending, Shaping/Forming, Cutting to create panels)
  • Plastic parts identification and repair techniques
  • Panel replacement methods and alignment
  • Suspension and steering systems
  • Basic frame/unibody damage and equipment knowledge including frame measuring/dimensioning
  • Continued Painting and Refinishing Techniques with both solvent and water based paint systems
  • Customer Service (including billing,  parts ordering, contacting customers for appointments)
  • Damage Estimating ( Hand Written and Computerized Methods-CCC Pathways)
  • Blueprinting damage and operations
  • Continued Diagnostic Scan Tool Utilization
  • SP/2 Collision Safety/Employability Training Course

Grade 12

  • Advanced Frame Repair Pulling & Measuring Techniques
  • Restraint Systems/Air bags/ Crash Avoidance Systems
  • Mechanical & Electrical Knowledge
  • Continued Diagnostic Scan tool Utilization Pre and Post Scanning
  • Glass Replacement
  • Advanced Painting/Blending Techniques
  • Advanced Damage Appraisal & Estimating including Blueprinting and Insurance knowledge
  • Customer Service continued 
  • Job Readiness/Professional Skills/Continuing Education opportunities
  • Entrepreneurship
  • SP/2 Collision Safety/Employability Training Course

Collision Repair and Refinishing

Collision Repair Technology course includes instruction in the four major collision repair areas. These areas include Structural Analysis and Damage Repair, Non-Structural Analysis and Damage Repair, Painting and Refinishing, and Mechanical and Electrical Components. Students are also instructed in a fifth area which is Damage Analysis and Estimating. Students will be introduced to the smallest of vehicle damage up to major collision damage.

The Collision Repair program utilizes the most current web-based I-CAR curriculum, which is our industry standard and is updated on a yearly basis. This allows the instructors to teach the students the most current methods and trends used in our industry.

The Collision Repair Shop at Pathfinder is a fully equipped collision and refinishing training facility, which functions like a normal repair shop, servicing customers and municipalities. This allows the students to gain trade experience with real world jobs along with the use of training aids. The shop is environmentally conscious as well and is utilizing a waterborne paint system and a dust recovery system for the sanding equipment. Students in all grades will complete the SP/2 Collision Safety and Employability Training program each year and achieve certificates of competency for the (6) training areas.

Upon meeting the requirements for shop and academics, students can participate in the cooperative education program starting mid-junior year. This allows them to work in an actual shop during their shop week and get paid and get a grade while gaining valuable experience.

The Collision Repair industry is evolving with technology and safety innovations that requires the instructors and students alike to continuously stay updated with the latest industry repair trends including the new accident avoidance systems and calibration requirements post collision. This requires current and future technicians to be able to understand how to repair today’s vehicles with very complex and demanding needs.

  • Annual Pathfinder Classic Car Show
  • Palmer Police Humvee Projects
  • Belchertown Lighting Committee Christmas Decorations Restoration
  • Palmer Bicentennial Parade Float Refurbish
  • 1930 Ford Model A Street Rod Project
  • ASE Student Certifications in Structural, Non-Structural, Mechanical/Electrical, Painting/Refinishing
  • I-CAR Certifications in Non-Structural and Painting/Refinishing
  • I-CAR Non-Structural Welding Certification
  • OSHA 10 Hour General Industry Certification
  • SP2 Safety Certifications
  • Math: (Geometry, Liquid measuring, Linear measuring metric and standard, ratios)
  • Science/Physics: (Ohm’s Law, Hydraulic Theory, Inertia, Laws of Motion)
  • ELA: reading and writing skills for interpreting trade related materials including service manuals and product information, ect.
  • Professional Skills/Employability Skills


Upon graduation:
  • Painting/Refinishing Apprentice
  • Collision Repair Apprentice
  • Vehicle Parts Removal and Installation Apprentice
  • Vehicle Detailer
  • Salvage/Recycle Yard Apprentice
  • Automotive Glass Repair Apprentice
  • Frame Repair Apprentice
  • Motorsports Fabricator Apprentice
  • Paint Supplies/ Mixing Apprentice
  • Heavy Equipment Repair Apprentice
  • Welder Apprentice
After completion of 1-2 years of post-secondary technical training (apprenticeship, certificate program or associate’s degree):
  • Painting/Refinishing Technician
  • Collision Repair Technician
  • Vehicle Parts Removal and Installation Technician
  • Vehicle Detail Technician
  • Salvage/Recycle Yard Technician
  • Automotive Glass Technician
  • Frame Technician
  • Motorsports Fabricator
  • Paint Supplies Representative
  • Welding Technician
  • Parts Counter Technician
  • Automotive Damage Appraiser
  • Collision Equipment Service Technician
After completion of Advanced degree (4 year college degree or higher)
  • Vehicle Designer
  • Vehicle Engineer
  • Collision Shop Owner
  • Collision Repair Instructor
  • Heavy Truck Collision Shop Owner
  • Marine Specialty Repair Shop Owner
  • Restoration/Custom Shop Owner
  • Vehicle Damage Appraisal Business Owner
  • Frame Repair Specialty Shop Owner
  • Industry Trainer

Pathfinder offers a wide range of vocational technical programs. We have expanded our offerings to include 16 unique programs. These exciting programs give students a competitive advantage both in college and in the workforce. Our programs are designed to help students create and follow pathways to a career of their choice.  Pursue your passion and enjoy your education!

The Cooperative Education Program at Pathfinder is an optional experience for seniors and juniors (second half of the school year) having a minimum 1,000 hours in their technical area. Through a cooperative arrangement between the school and employer, the student will receive job placement related to their technical area of study during their “shop week” with wages paid by the employer. To be eligible, a student must have the recommendation of their technical program teachers, meet the required grade, attendance, and discipline standards. The student must also have their OSHA 10-hour card. Some technical areas may require additional certifications prior to entering the program.

We are no longer accepting work requests for the current school year. Work requests will resume again in mid-September, 2023.  Thank you.

To schedule a tour please contact our Guidance Department:
413-283-9701 Ext. 247
Email Our Guidance Department