Looking for a recession proof career? Then you need to find out how to become a mechanic. As long as there are cars and trucks on the road, boats on the water, and planes in the air, there will be a continuing need for skilled mechanics. The United States Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that as of May 2012 the median annual salary for Auto Mechanics in the U.S. was $36,610. This means there are plenty of jobs, and the pay is pretty good. So how do you get started?
Automotive Mechanic Schools
If you are really serious about a career as a mechanic you should consider attending one of the large automotive mechanic training schools. Here is a short list of schools that would be great places to start your training:
At UEI College, we want you to succeed. We’re like a family and we want you to be a part of it. From the moment you enter ourschool, to graduation and beyond, we are right there with you.
- Automotive Technician (11-Month Diploma Program)
At Universal Technical Institute (UTI), you won't just train for a career. You'll train for success. The hands-on training and high-tech skills you'll get at UTI can put you on the fast track toward a rewarding career as a professional technician. Across the nation, you'll find UTI-trained technicians working in great jobs with leading manufacturers, dealerships and repair shops.
San Joaquin Valley College is an accredited private junior college committed to the professional success of its students and graduates.
Founded in 1977, SJVC has campuses located throughout California-including an Online division and offers a variety of accelerated Certificate and Associate of Science degree programs in the business, medical and technical fields.
- Degree - Aviation Maintenance Technology
- Certificate - Aviation Maintenance Technology
Most automotive training schools will offer a wide range of specialization that will make finding a job after graduation a lot easier, not to mention many of the schools have relationships throughout the automotive industry that may assist you in more quickly entering the workforce.
High School and Community College Shop Classes
There was a time when every high school offered automotive classes as part of their vocational education curriculum. Unfortunately, those days are gone. With limited budgets most high schools have dropped most of not all of their shop classes. The good news is that a lot of community colleges still offer classes in engine repair, auto body repair, and many other vocational type courses. Enrolling in these types of classes is a good idea because it will give you a good understanding of what a career as a mechanic might entail. The experience you gain won’t likely be enough for you to get hired by a car dealership, but may be enough to get you hired at a mom and pop type repair shop?
Becoming an ASE Certified Automotive Technician
No matter what path your training takes, the ultimate goal should be to become an ASE Certified Mechanic. The National Service for Automotive Service Excellence, or ASE as its more commonly known, is the largest automotive certification organization in the U.S. ASE, which is a non-profit organization, certifies technicians in over 40 different specialties. A benefit of attending a large training school is that they will prepare you to take and pass the ASE exams upon completion of your training program, whereas being self taught, or learning on the job may not give you all the necessary knowledge or skills needed to earn certification.
Many Options to Become a Mechanic
So as you can see, there are many paths to choose from to start your career as a mechanic. It is important to choose a course that fits your individual goals and resources. Our recommendation is to contact the large schools and find out what they have to offer. You may be able to find scholarships or tuition assistance that could help expedite your journey to a long rewarding career. Enter your information in the form at the top of this page and find the best school for you.