Becoming a diesel mechanic can be a rewarding and lucrative career. If you enjoy being around big trucks, and working on machinery, then becoming a diesel mechanic is probably the career for you. As of 2012, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported over 240,000 diesel mechanics employed in the United States. Into the year 2020, the BLS predicts that the number of diesel mechanic jobs will increase by at least fifteen percent, adding another 35,000 jobs to the current market. In an unsure economy, this job market is one that shows promise of robust growth because of the current interest in fuel efficiency and environmentally friendly alternatives to gasoline engines.
Most employers will require workers to be at least 18 years of age and have at least a high school diploma or GED equivalency. Some technical schools or community college programs will allow students to gain an equivalency degree while beginning the diesel engineering program.
Application Process and Costs
Missouri is possibly one of the best states for achieving a diesel mechanic education. There are a variety of different schools evenly dispersed throughout the state. Eight schools throughout the state include technical schools, community colleges, technical centers and traditional universities. The acceptance rate into diesel engineering programs is at 94%, making it possible for most applicants to begin right away.
The average tuition for a complete certification program is $3,788. Many different types of loans and grants are available including federal and state student loans. By filling out the FAFSA, you can begin to plan your educational future by seeing what financial assistance you may be eligible for. The average class size is 17 students to 1 instructor with coursework and actual hands-on training being the primary methods of learning.
Most programs offer state certificates in diesel technology but some schools do offer an associate’s degree in diesel technology. Classes that may be included are diesel fuel systems, advanced diesel engines, rigging, machine hydraulics and diesel engine performance.
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For those who work or already have busy schedules but still want to pursue a certificate or degree in diesel engineering, there are many different online programs available. With flexible scheduling and competitive curriculum requirements, students are able to pursue this career goal without making personal sacrifices. Most online programs will cover coursework including basic diesel engine operations, computerized truck management systems, and a wide variety of others. Most programs are available for completion in anywhere from seven to twelve months. Many schools offer students a wide variety of discounts on everything from Snap-on tools to study materials for the ASE certification exam.
Maintaining Certification/License & Renewal
There are several certifications available in Missouri, making it possible to distinguish yourself as a highly qualified diesel mechanic. ASE certification is a nationally recognized certification. Automotive Service Excellence, ASE, certification requires the successful completion of several tests. Available online, ASE certification also requires information about your work experience. There are different levels of certification available, but because ASE certification is consistent, prospective employers can easily consider your certifications with confidence.
Missouri goes further, offering state recognition as a Missouri Recognized Repair Technician. In order to gain this certification, you must have ASE certification in areas A6, A8, and L1; be employed full time at a repair shop; and approved to the Gateway Vehicle Inspection Program.
Salary & Job Prospects
The state of Missouri, as with most states, shows promising growth in the field of diesel mechanics and repair. Because of the growing interest in environmentally friendly ways to transport, most companies are finding that diesel engines burn cleaner and more efficiently. As this trend continues, so will the need for diesel mechanics. The job market shows a continued growth of at least 15% into the year 2020, according to the BLS. The average salary for diesel mechanics in Missouri is $44,500 but there will be variations depending on the exact location and various levels of certification and experience.
More Diesel Mechanic Schools in Missouri
|SCHOOL NAME||CITY||PHONE NUMBER||STREET ADDRESS||WEBSITE|
|Ozarks Technical Community College||Springfield||417-447-7500||1001 E Chestnut Expy, Springfield, MO 65802||http://www.otc.edu/|
|Vatterott College-Springfield||Springfield||417-831-8116||3850 S Campbell Ave, Springfield, MO 65807||http://www.vatterott.edu/springfield.asp|
|Three Rivers Community College||Poplar Bluff||860-215-9000||574 New London Turnpike, Norwich, CT 06360||http://www.trcc.commnet.edu/|
|Grand River Technical School||Chillicothe||660-646-3414||1200 Fair St, Chillicothe, MO 64601||http://www.grts.org/|
|Crowder College||Neosho||417-451-3223||601 Laclede Ave, Neosho, MO 64850||http://www.crowder.edu/|
|Saint Louis Community College||Saint Louis||314-539-5000||300 S Broadway, St. Louis, MO 63102||http://www.stlcc.edu/|
|Pike-Lincoln Technical Center||Eolia||573-485-2900||342 Vo Tech Rd, Eolia, MO 63344||http://pltc.k12.mo.us/|
|Northland Career Center||Platte City||816-858-5505||1801 Branch St, Platte City, MO 64079||http://www.northlandcareercenter.com/education/school/school.php?sectionid=3|