To find employment in this field, you will need to complete a program offered through an auto mechanic school, where they offer both certificate and associate’s degree courses. Here we will not only take a look at the basic programs available through this type of school but we will also find out about advanced courses for specialty areas and continuing education classes that are available through a number of organizations and schools.
Education Options for the Mechanic
The two year associate’s degree program will include the student working as an apprentice through a car manufacturer or a local repair shop for a period of six to twelve months. The apprenticeship is actually very similar to an entry level position in the field and will often feature hourly compensation.
When it comes to employment, it will typically be based on the individual’s specialty area, such as the brand of car they excel at working on.
An auto mechanic school will feature courses on different types of cars, by manufacturer, in order to teach students the different methods used to repair a certain type of vehicle.
In addition to working as an apprentice the student will learn by classroom instruction with courses in automotive emissions, math, digital diagnostic testing, steering, brakes and suspension.
Background Requirements and Continuing Education
Many of the entry level mechanics in this field will acquire their skills by way of work experience as an apprentice in a professional garage. Apprenticeships can last three to five years before a trainee is considered to have the qualifications to be an automotive technician or mechanic. To work as a transmission or brakes specialist the mechanic will need to enroll in an additional one year program, including a six month apprenticeship for that specialty area.
To earn the official title of mechanic, students will need to take a certification exam through an accredited organization. Requirements for certification can vary and may include prior work experience in the field, completion of a mechanic program, being 18 years of age and having a high school diploma or GED.
Even the most experienced mechanics in this field will be required to attend different types of automotive training programs in order for them to stay current with the changes made to electrical systems and repair and maintenance techniques. These additional courses will usually be paid for by the mechanics employer and can be found through vocational schools, trade schools, community colleges and technical schools.