Conventional wrench spinners have gone the way of the Model T.
By Gabby Hyman
Oct 26, 2006
Conventional wrench spinners have gone the way of the Model T. Professionals trained in automotive repair these days are bona fide technologists, with specializations in power plants, transmissions, braking systems, and computerized fuel and ignition systems. Here in Colorado, technical and vocational schools offer Associate of Occupational Studies degree programs in Automotive Technology to prepare students for work on today's sophisticated trucks and cars.
Automotive mechanics students at colleges in Colorado are entering a profession where it no longer suffices to pop the hood to find a faulty plug wire. Whether you're just beginning automotive technical training, or if you want to learn to operate the latest diagnostic equipment used in the vocation, you'll find accelerated, career-focused programs in Denver that can shift your learning into high gear.
Test Preparation Vocational Training
It pays to evaluate automotive technical schools to determine if their coursework is designed to prepare you for the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certification exams. You'll want to attend a trade school that combines diagnostic automotive theory along with hands-on repair training.
Comprehensive automotive vocational training programs should provide preparation work to sit for ASE exams in engine repair, electrical/electronic systems, heating and air conditioning, suspension, steering, brakes, transmissions, axles, and drive trains.
Look over the course list for vocational automotive training in engine design, rebuilding, manufacturers' specifications, computerized alignment, I/M 240 emission testing and diagnostics, and power-train components. It's also valuable if your technical training program includes an active shop apprenticeship in addition to (or combined with) a repair regimen on a variety of trucks and passenger cars.
Denver Area Automotive Tech Wages
Wages for Colorado automobile mechanics and technicians vary based on certifications, business size, vocational and trade schooling, and municipality. According to Salary.com, entry-level mechanics in the Denver area with trade school expertise and up to 2 years' experience earn from $25,125 to $43,170 a year. After two years on the job, Denver mechanics may earn up to $72,175 a year, depending on specializations and the shop's sophistication and clientele.
Trade Schools Lead to the Best Opportunities
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that graduates of formal trade school programs in automotive technology will be best prepared for job openings in the profession. BLS claims that the more attractive job candidates will have "diagnostic and problem-solving skills, knowledge of electronics and mathematics, and mechanical aptitude."
People who enter the vocation should expect steady work even if the overall economy takes a turn for the worse, the BLS predicts, since families, businesses, and interstate commerce all thrive on the working conditions of their vehicles.
About the Author
Gabby Hyman has created online strategies and written content for Fortune 500 companies including eToys, GoTo.com, Siebel Systems, Microsoft Encarta, Avaya, and Nissan UK.