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Best Automotive Technology Major Jobs And Careers

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Automotive Technology Career Paths

Automotive Technology
Tire Technician Technician Service Manager
Service Director
9 Yearsyrs
Tire Technician Technician Engineer
Chief Engineer
10 Yearsyrs
Auto Technician Automotive Technician Maintenance Technician
Maintenance Director
11 Yearsyrs
Auto Technician Automotive Technician Maintenance Technician
Maintenance Technician Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Tire Technician Service Technician Service Advisor
Assistant Service Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Tire Technician Mechanic Carpenter
General Contractor
6 Yearsyrs
Vehicle Mechanic Mechanic Owner/Operator
Shop Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Roustabout Welder Diesel Mechanic
Lead Mechanic
7 Yearsyrs
Roustabout Floor Hand Welder
Shop Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Lot Attendant Delivery Driver Parts Specialist
Parts Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Roustabout Truck Driver Dispatcher
Fleet Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Roustabout Forklift Operator Automotive Technician
Master Technician
6 Yearsyrs
Line Technician Machine Operator Mechanic
Senior Mechanic
7 Yearsyrs
Lot Attendant Lube Technician Automotive Technician
Automotive Instructor
10 Yearsyrs
General Service Technician Service Technician Service Advisor
Body Shop Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Vehicle Mechanic Quality Control Inspector Quality Assurance Inspector
Production Superintendent
10 Yearsyrs
Structures Mechanic Aircraft Structure Mechanic Aircraft Mechanic
Mechanics Supervisor
6 Yearsyrs
Service Writer Parts Specialist Parts Sales Manager
Commercial Sales Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Service Writer Technical Support Technician Technical Analyst
Technical Team Lead
5 Yearsyrs
Structures Mechanic Manufacturing Engineer Senior Mechanical Engineer
Technical Advisor
6 Yearsyrs
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Automotive Technology jobs

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How To Get A Job With An Automotive Technology Degree

The Automotive Technology industry is a relatively new one, having only existed for the last hundred or so years, but the way that cars and highways have embedded themselves in American culture has led to the field's explosion in popularity. This same popularity has also introduced rapid technological advances in Automotive Technology, so much that the field looks wildly different than it did even 20 or 30 years ago.

Jobs in the industry are overwhelmingly based on servicing cars in some form or another, typically in service positions such as Mechanics or Service Technicians. But even with a relatively clear career path, it can be difficult to decide which jobs in the industry are the most interesting or engaging.

Well, that's where we come in. We literally created a map, just for Automotive Technology Majors such as yourself, to navigate your way through the choppy waters of recent graduation.

Feel free to focus on the map alone -- it's pretty cool, if we do say so ourselves. But for those of you who prefer step by step navigation on your path, keep reading. We'll give you the rundown on:

  • What skills you'll need
  • How to begin
  • What jobs you can expect to find as an Automotive Technology Major
  • Some quick interview tips
  • Consider graduate school
  • External resources

First thing's first: what skills you'll need to get started.

1. Skills for Automotive Technology Majors

For the Automotive Tech field, hard skills like diagnosis proficiency and automotive knowledge/expertise tend to be more emphasized than soft skills. That's because the field tends to be more hands-on than others, requiring you to utilize all of your senses in addition to specialized equipment in order for you to accurately determine what's wrong with a vehicle and figure out the best fix for the problem.

Let's take a closer look at what some of these Automotive Technology skills look like:

Analytical Skills

In order to properly diagnose problems in cars brought to your shop, you'll need to have good problem-solving and analytical skills in addition to all of your practical knowledge regarding how cars operate.

Physical Ability

Most Automotive Technology jobs require a lot of hands-on work with vehicles, which is very physically demanding. In order to avoid discomfort or outright inability to work, you'll need to have a decent amount of physical mobility and endurance. In addition, this job is particularly difficult to work in the event that one or more of your senses are impaired for any reason due to the very tactile nature of auto repair. Lacking the ability to hear, see, or even smell has the potential to put a service person at a severe disadvantage in this field.

Communication/Customer Service Skills

Especially if you get into repair, you'll likely be interacting with customers on a daily basis, and so having good customer services will be essential to your success. Good communication skills will also come in handy when it comes to explaining to non-car aficionados about what's wrong with their vehicle in layman's terms.

2. Where to Begin Your Career After Getting an Automotive Technology Degree

An internship is an excellent way to get a leg up in the automotive industry, especially if you're able to find one at a company you enjoy working for. You'll be learning important practical skills while also building out your network of business contacts -- besides the fact that you won't be making much (or perhaps any) money during this time, there's no real downside and plenty of benefits.

The best way to get these kind of internships are by exploring the network you already have at your disposal. Reach out to your college's career resources department to see if they have any connections that might be useful to you. If that doesn't work out, then reach out to various shops on your own and express to them your interest in interning at their business -- this is easier to sell while you're still in school, so if this is interesting to you, make sure you start reaching out before you graduate from college.

There are also apprenticeships available to you, although they're not often called this anymore. But most entry-level jobs in the automotive industry are heavily supervised, as it takes years to become an experienced mechanic -- so if you miss out on internships, just know that it's not too late to get a more learning-based position under your belt.

Before you settle on an internship or apprenticeship, though, you'll want to make sure it's the right fit for you. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Where (in the state/the country/the world) do you want to work?
  • What size and type of organization do you want to work for?
  • Do you need compensation in an internship, or might you be able to consider alternative compensation (experience, work samples, references, networking, etc.)
  • Is relocation an option?

3. Available Jobs For Automotive Technology Majors

The automotive industry is all about cars, including everything from their conception and design to their manufacturing and sale, and even including their post-sale maintenance and repair. As a result, despite the industry's laser-like focus on a single product, the variety of jobs related to the industry in some way remains staggering.

With Automotive Technology specifically, the focus is on the way that cars and trucks operate from a mechanical standpoint, and as a result the jobs tend to be related to either the development of new cars and automotive technologies, the manufacturing process, or (most frequently) in the repair and maintenance of automotives.

With our map, you can click the Job Titles and learn more specific information for each position (what their responsibilities are, how much they get paid, etc.) But here, we wanted to call out some of the most common jobs for recent Automotive Technology Major grads.

Here are a few of the most interesting jobs for recent grads such as yourself:

  • Automotive Technician.
  • Automotive Technicians (or Service Techs) repair, maintain, and inspect cars and light trucks. Their duties include things as simple as performing basic care, like changing oil, to more complex procedures like identifying obscure car problems and repairing or replacing damaged parts.

  • Shop Foreman.
  • Shop Foremen direct and schedule the work order of an entire shop's worth of technicians, monitoring their progress to ensure that work is being done in an timely and safe manner.

  • Team Leader.
  • Team Leaders provide guidance and instruction to an entire team of individuals whose responsibilities and projects vary by industry. In the Automotive Technology industry, this could be anything from running an auto shop to organizing a team of salespeople.

    4. Some Quick Job Search Tips for Automotive Technology Majors

    Get Certified

    One of the best ways to find jobs in this industry is to prove that you have the skills necessary to work. Certifications are available in a number of different skills and disciplines, with many requiring taking pre-required courses.

    Others require only that you finish the test itself (and that you pay to take the test, of course). You can learn the skills necessary for some of these certifications just through your undergraduate degree or through internships, but some certifications might also require an amount of on-the-job training. Those kind of certifications in particular will be more helpful to you finding new jobs later on, or getting promotions at your current job.

    Network

    While helpful at any stage of your career, networking is extremely useful to you while you're still in college. If you can find someone working the position you'd like to work yourself, reach out to them to see if they can tell you more about their work, such as what an average day looks like for them or how they got their job in this field.

    This helps you learn more about the position itself while also helping you find people who work in the field already. You can reach out to as many people you like this way -- if you manage to make a strong connection with someone this way, keep it in mind once you're finally out on the job hunt. They might be able to help point you to a place that's hiring, or even help you find a job at their own place of work.

    5. Continuing Education and Certifications in Automotive Technology

    Pursuing an advanced degree

    Obtaining a graduate degree in your course of study can serve as an excellent way to separate you from the herd - but you must first decide whether it's worth your time.

    When it comes to post-graduate Automotive Technology education, Master's programs are few and far between, and Ph.Ds are rarer still. Most schools either assume that their Automotive Technology majors will be going directly into the work force or will have specialized in Automotive Engineering, which is more geared towards the development of new technology than it is understanding and repairing existing technology.

    Here are common advanced degrees that people with Automotive Technology degree normally consider:

    Master's in Automotive Technology

    • Having a Master's in Automotive Tech can help you either pick up a few more practical skills and certifications as well as give you a small pay bump in your later work.

    6. External Resources

    If you're still not sure what to do with your degree here are some external sites, to help you with your decision:

    National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence

    The ASE is a professional organization working to certify and test mechanics and service technicians in order to promote excellence in the field of Automotive Technology.

    Automotive Maintenance and Repair Organization (AMRA)

    AMRA is a trade organization dedicated to the field of automotive maintenance, specifically with helping establish lines of communication between maintenance and repair providers and the consumers to whom they provide service.

    The American Society of Mechanical Engineers

    A non-profit professional organization dedicated to sharing knowledge about the field of mechanical engineering, including education and networking opportunities for members.

    USAJobs

    Enter "Automotive Technology" into the search bar and you can get a sense of what kind of government jobs are available to Visual and Performing Arts Majors. Find a job title you like and come back here to learn more about it.

    Bureau Of Labor Statistics

    The BLS offers detailed data on pay, location, and availability of different kinds of jobs across the country.

    In fact, we draw a lot of our research on the best places for jobs from the information provided on the site.

    And if this all seems like a lot - don't worry - the hard part (getting your degree!) is already over.

    These Are The 50 Most Common First Jobs For Automotive Technology Majors

    Top Locations: Tucson, AZ; El Paso, TX; Aurora, CO; Scottsdale, AZ;
    Job Description: Automotive service technicians and mechanics, often called service technicians or service techs, inspect, maintain, and repair cars and light trucks.
    CGrowth CJob security

    Learn More: Jobs | Salaries | Info

    Top Locations: Houston, TX; Phoenix, AZ; Gillette, WY; Anchorage, AK;
    Job Description: A Mechanic is responsible for building and assembling machines or mechanical components according to a project's requirements. They also perform basic auto care maintenance, such as oil changes, tire rotations, and inspecting machines and engines.
    AGrowth CJob security

    Learn More: Jobs | Salaries | Info

    Top Locations: Nashville, TN; Houston, TX; Denver, CO; Indianapolis, IN;
    Job Description: Veterinary technologists and technicians perform medical tests under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian to assist in diagnosing the injuries and illnesses of animals.
    AGrowth CJob security

    Learn More: Jobs | Salaries | Info

    Top Locations: Charlotte, NC; Indianapolis, IN; Phoenix, AZ; Roanoke Rapids, NC;
    Job Description: Diesel service technicians and mechanics inspect, repair, and overhaul buses and trucks, or maintain and repair any type of diesel engine.
    CGrowth CJob security

    Learn More: Jobs | Salaries | Info

    Top Locations: Memphis, TN; El Paso, TX; Saint Louis, MO; Dallas, TX;
    Job Description: A Diesel Mechanic is focused on repairing and maintaining diesel engines used to power machines, such as trucks, trailers, and pickups. This job also involves diagnosing problems, disassembling engines, and examining various parts for defects.
    AGrowth CJob security

    Learn More: Jobs | Salaries | Info

    Top Locations: Indianapolis, IN; Dallas, TX; Gillette, WY; Cleveland, OH;
    Job Description: Diesel service technicians and mechanics inspect, repair, and overhaul buses and trucks, or maintain and repair any type of diesel engine.
    AGrowth CJob security

    Learn More: Jobs | Salaries | Info

    Top Locations: Phoenix, AZ; Colorado Springs, CO; Denver, CO; San Antonio, TX;
    Job Description: A Lube Technician is responsible for vehicle maintenance and light care, such as tire rotations and oil changes. They also ensure that the service centers are clean and presentable.
    CGrowth DJob security

    Learn More: Jobs | Salaries | Info

    Top Locations: Fresno, CA; Tulsa, OK; Chicago, IL; Twin Falls, ID;
    Job Description: A Maintenance Technician examines buildings and repairs mechanical systems to ensure that they are consistent with health and safety standards. They make small repairs and adjustments, as needed, and perform regular preventive maintenance on machines, equipment, and plant facilities.
    CGrowth CJob security

    Learn More: Jobs | Salaries | Info

    Top Locations: El Paso, TX; Indianapolis, IN; Oxnard, CA; New York, NY;
    Job Description: Assistant managers have a lot of responsibilities, and this job requires good leadership skills. The manager is typically responsible for planning and directing the operations of a business unit, department or store.
    CGrowth CJob security

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    Top Locations: Ashland, ME; Albany, GA; Imlay City, MI; Grand Rapids, MI;
    Job Description: A Machine Operator is responsible for operating and maintaining complicated machinery and making sure it functions properly. They can work both outside or indoors, and work for a single company or on a contract basis.
    DGrowth CJob security

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