Those within the auto repair trade engage in duties that may include working on all parts of a vehicle to conduct mechanical repairs as well as specializing in collision and bodywork. Positions for auto repair workers can be found in large dealerships and smaller, privately owned repair service centers as well as shops that primarily provide repair service for work on mufflers and brakes. Preparation for entering the auto repair trade includes completing a post-secondary level training program that incorporates combined instruction within the classroom as well as providing hands-on practice and training.
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Conduct some research on the auto repair trade to initially determine if you may want to specialize within a particular area such as collision and bodywork or focus primarily on mechanical repair work. There are different types of vocational training programs available depending on your interests and goals.
Evaluate your strengths and weaknesses relative to your present knowledge in the field and your level of education. Having a strong inherent mechanical aptitude is important in order to diagnose and do repair work as well as collision and bodywork.
Consider a vocational training program that will provide instruction and hands-on practice for mechanical repair work as well as collision and bodywork. Having skills and knowledge across a broader range will give you an added advantage when looking for a position after graduation.
Determine what type of vocational training program that you want to enroll in. Educational programs focusing on the auto repair trade are available at community colleges as well as trade and technical schools.
Review the curriculum of the programs at several schools to help you decide which one will provide you with the most comprehensive training and education in preparation for a position within the auto repair trade. Also consider the costs for tuition and financial aid programs that the schools may offer.
Review the entry requirements for admission to various auto repair training programs. Most community colleges usually require a high school diploma for admission into their certificate and degree programs.
Decide whether your goals are to attend a concentrated 6 month program or more formal, in-depth training that may include certification. Acquiring the ASE (Automotive Service Excellence) certification will give you an additional edge when applying for a job.
Consider an associate’s degree program that includes coursework to promote business skills if a management position is your eventual goal. Depending on the type of program, most vocational or technical schools usually offer classes in administration and business.
Contemplate the possible option of an apprenticeship or on-the-job training program. There are automotive service facilities and dealerships that may provide interested and enthusiastic individuals with paid training and education in the auto repair trade.
Select the best vocational training program for your needs, interests and career goals. Many auto repair trade programs offer additional financial support in the form of scholarships and grants.
Chart out your finalized plans and proceed with confidence. Attend your classes, study, develop your skills and you will soon be qualified to enter the field of the auto repair trade.