Auto mechanics work on a variety of vehicles, diagnosing and repairing cars, vans, trucks, and more. These professionals might be employed by large companies, car dealerships, repair shops, or other automotive facilities.
If you have an interest in engines and enjoy working with your hands, this may be the perfect career for you. Some mechanics like the variety of working on any type of vehicle or repair, while others specialize in a certain type of vehicle or particular type of repair.
West Virginia schools offer a variety of automotive technology programs where students can earn degrees or certification. Here are five schools with training programs in the field:
In most cases, students in automotive technology programs can expect to study the eight basic principles of auto repair:
Training prepares graduates to work on the complex, computerized vehicles of today. Mastery of these eight principles also helps prepare you for ASE certification in each category. Achieving all eight earns you Master Mechanic status.
In addition to classroom-based lessons, most programs include a hands-on training component. These exercises, which give students the chance to work on actual automotive systems, may take place at a campus workshop or even a local auto repair facility.
West Virginia does not require auto mechanics to hold a special license. However, Automobile Service Excellence (ASE) certification may help boost your resume and can even increase your earning power. In addition, some shops require their mechanics hold ASE certification.
The EPA also requires mechanics working with refrigerants, such as A/C repair technicians, to obtain proper certification. Learn more about the ASE and EPA certification processes by following the links below.
Source: Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) 2016-17, National Center for Education Statistics, http://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/
The map below shows job statistics for the career type by metro area, for West Virginia. A table below the map shows job popularity and salaries across the state.
Listed below are metro areas ranked by the popularity of jobs for Automotive Mechanics relative to the population of the city. Salary data was obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
2017 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2016-26 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; O*NET® 23.1 Database, O*NET OnLine, National Center for O*NET Development, Employment & Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, onetonline.org
Annual Median Salary