Diesel Mechanic Schools in Washington
If you're interested in becoming a diesel mechanic, there are 11 schools in Washington that can help you meet your goals and starting a great career. These schools are primarily centered along the west coast of the state, but there are a few further east. Most Washington schools give their students two options. You can choose to complete a certificate in diesel equipment technology, or you can opt for an Associate's degree in diesel equipment technology. A certificate may take you about one year to complete, while an Associate's degree may take you about two years to complete. Many of the classes are the same, regardless of which educational path you choose. Some of these classes include Hydraulic Systems, Diesel Technology, Air Brakes, and Advanced Service Applications.
Finding Your Diesel Mechanic Program in Washington
Part of planning out your education is planning out how you will pay for college. The average cost of tuition in Washington is $4021, with an average student loan amount of $5295. Many students also qualify for scholarships and grants; the average scholarship award in Washington is $1635. As a Washington student, one scholarship that is available to you is the Washington State Auto Dealers Association Scholarship. In total, this association has awarded almost $50,000 in scholarships to Washington students.
Washington does not have any licensing requirements in place for diesel mechanics. After you have worked as a diesel mechanic for two years, you may choose to become ASE certified. To become ASE certified, choose one or more certification tests. Once you have successfully passed your exams, you become ASE certified for five years.
Working as a Diesel Mechanic in Washington
Diesel mechanics can enjoy a strong job outlook across the country between 2010 and 2020. The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects job openings for diesel mechanics to increase by 15% through 2020. According to O*Net, job growth in Washington is only slightly slower than the national average. They expect job openings for diesel mechanics to increased by 11% through 2020 (O*Net, 2010).
If you work in Washington, you can look forward to possibly earning a salary that is considerably higher than the national average. The median salary for a diesel mechanic in Washington is $51,600 per year, which is higher than the national average of $42,300 per year (O*Net, 2012). Most diesel mechanics in Washington earn between $35,700 per year to $71,300 per year (O*Net, 2012).
With diesel mechanic employers across the state, you can choose from a variety of work environments in Washington. Most diesel mechanic employers are trucking companies, auto dealerships, repair shops, and leasing centers. While dealerships and leasing centers may have more traditional hours, you may still have to work some evening and weekend hours. Trucking companies and repair shops tend to have longer weekend and evening hours. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that most diesel mechanics, in addition to working day hours, work a combination of the evening, weekend, and overtime hours. In Washington, some of the biggest employers are Nelson Leasing, Buerge Ford, Rush Truck Centers, and Ryder Logistics & Transportation.
From the ocean views and laid-back lifestyle that most Washington residents enjoy, to the variety of cities and suburban areas in the state, Washington is a state that really has something for everyone. For those who love big cities, Washington has Seattle, Spokane, Tacoma, and Vancouver. However, there are also plenty of smaller, unique suburban communities with their own quirks. Sperling's Best Places reports that the cost of living in Washington is about 17% higher than the national average. With attractions like Olympic National Park, the Space Needle, Mount Rainier National Park, and Wild Waves Theme Park, it's easy to see why so many Washington residents stay there for their entire lives.