Diesel Mechanic Schools in Michigan
If you are ready to begin your career as a diesel mechanic, a school in Michigan may be the perfect choice for you. There is only one diesel mechanic school in Michigan, but it is well-known for the strength of its diesel technology program. The cost of tuition at Kirtland Community College is $4315 per year. However, if you attend this school, you may be eligible for certain financial aid opportunities. Many students are eligible for scholarships, and the average scholarship award is $2312. Student loans are also an option, and the average student loan in Michigan is $4213. By filling out the FAFSA, you can find out which grants and loans you are eligible for.
Comparing Diesel Mechanic Programs in Michigan
The Automotive Technology Diesel Service Specialist program at Kirtland Community College requires students to complete 33 credits. Most students can complete this program in one year, which includes a summer semester. If you are unsure whether or not you want to complete an Associate's degree, you can start with this one-year certificate. If you decide to continue your schooling and finish an Associate's degree, your credits can be applied towards this degree. Some of the classes you may have to take during your Diesel Service Specialist program include Diesel Technology, Diesel Fuel Engines, and Engine Rebuilding.
Diesel mechanics do not need any special licensure or certification in Michigan. This means that you can begin working as a diesel mechanic as soon as you complete your degree. After you have worked as a diesel mechanic for two years, you may choose to take one or multiple ASE tests. Upon passing one or more ASE tests, you earn ASE certification, which lasts for five years. This can be used to get a more specialized job or move up in your current career.
Working as a Mechanic in Michigan
Job outlook for diesel mechanics is strong across the country. The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects job openings for diesel mechanics to increase by 15% between 2010 and 2020. This amounts to 35,000 job openings during the decade. O*Net reports that there are currently about 6600 employed diesel mechanics in Michigan. They predict that this number will increase to over 7100 by 2020 (O*Net, 2010).
Completing your diesel mechanic education can pave the way to higher earning potential. O*Net lists the median salary for a diesel mechanic in Michigan as $42,700 (O*Net, 2012). The high end of the salary range goes up to $62,400 (O*Net, 2012). If you earn ASE certification or gain seniority in your current position, you may be able to earn more money.
Completing your diesel mechanic education gives you the freedom to work in a variety of settings. Many employers hire new graduates for entry-level diesel mechanic positions. Nationwide, most large diesel mechanic employers are truck driving companies, auto repair shops, automobile dealerships, and leasing centers. You may work in a garage, on roadsides, or at work sites. Most diesel mechanics work full-time. Depending on where you work, you may have to work evening hours, weekend hours, and overtime hours. Some of the largest diesel mechanic employers in Michigan include Don Hinds Ford, Dickinson Fleet Services, Nelson Leasing, TransTechs, and Rush Truck Centers.
Choosing to live and work in Michigan is a little bit different than deciding to work in any other state. You see, when you moved to Michigan, you have to decide whether you're going to live in the Upper Peninsula or the Lower Peninsula. The Upper Peninsula is more remote, making it a good choice for people that want more privacy. The Lower Peninsula has most of Michigan's larger cities, including Detroit, Grand Rapids, Warren, and Lansing. According to Sperling's Best Places, Michigan residents enjoy a cost of living that is about 12% lower than the national average. There are many areas in Michigan with low real estate prices.