Students in the Auto Mechanics Technology program develop skills for servicing and repairing all systems of the automobile. Students receive instruction in engines, chassis, standard and automatic transmissions, electrical, safety, brakes, and advanced computerized fuel systems while working on customer projects and training aids. Shop experience is combined with courses of related theory. Emphasis is placed on competency in the technical skills and completing specified course objectives before moving to other instructional segments. The program includes cooperative education and internship opportunities where students obtain advanced on-the-job training. Safety in the program is stressed. Students must hold a valid driver’s license while enrolled in this program. Students also have the opportunity to participate in the program’s Auto Club.
Job opportunities are available in nearly any part of the world. Opportunities to use mechanical skills are also available in marine and small engine repair, service advisors, and parts counter persons. Graduates find employment in dealerships; independent repair shops; service stations; quick lube stores; small engine, industrial, and marine repair shops; fleet repair businesses; and plant mechanical maintenance. A current national shortage of more than 250,000 mechanics makes this an excellent job opportunity for people who are able to adapt and want to enter into a highly technical field.
In most cases, the work is indoors in a heated or air-conditioned facility with adequate lighting. Hours are generally 8:00 am to 5:00 pm. Most special tools required in a facility are usually supplied by the employer which augments the mechanic’s personal hand tools.
This program has physical requirements that may affect the student’s ability to perform in this field. These requirements can be found on the Bureau of Labor Statistics website or at O-Net OnLine. Physical well-being, good manual dexterity, and the strength to sometimes lift heavy objects are necessary. More information on reading, writing, math, and comprehension skills are increasingly important. Prior automotive or industrial arts skills developed at the high school level are helpful but not necessary.
Average starting rate is from $9.00 to $18.00 per hour. Generally wages are increased as the technician becomes more experienced in the field. Experienced technicians can earn $30,000 to $65,000 per year. Wages vary from one part of the country to another.
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