Friday, March 25, 2011

Automotive Service Technician Apprenticeship Offers Valuable Practical Experience

Did you know that there are various positions within the automotive service technician field? The most obvious position is that of a technician who works directly with cars. This professional inspects, maintains, and repairs automobiles that run on electricity, gasoline, or alternative fuels like ethanol. The automotive service tech is also responsible for executing basic care maintenance like tire rotations and oil changes, diagnosing complex problems, and planning and executing vehicle repair. In addition, other careers within this field include: service writers/ advisors, service managers, instructors/professors and auto company representatives. Therefore, if you love cars but want a more hands-off role, there are options just for you in the transportation industry, which is one of the largest in Canada.

No matter, which position interests you, the first step is to attend an automotive service technician apprenticeship at a post-secondary institution. Centennial College offers such an apprenticeship through its co-op program, which is partnered with the Toronto Automobile Dealers’ Association. This particular program takes two years to complete and combines in-class sessions with field experience. If you are interested in applying, you must be able to present at minimum an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or General Educational Development (GED) or equivalent. In addition, a resume and transcript may be required and English proficiency may be considered. You must also attend a program admission session, during which you will fill out a questionnaire.

Once in the program, students will find that the first eight months are spent at Centennial College’s Ashtonbee Campus. This high-tech location is the largest transportation training centre in the province. It houses fully-equipped labs that simulate car shops. Students train on actual cars and are taught by professionals who bring valuable experience from the field. All of the courses offered during the time students are in school are geared to make them job-ready for the field aspect of the automotive service technician apprenticeship. These courses include: Workplace Practices and Procedures (areas covered include: fasteners, bearing and seals, oxyacetylene operation and computer fundamentals), Drive Train Systems (introduction to the purpose and fundamentals, types, styles and application, principles of operation of push-type clutches and flywheel assemblies and basic gear theory), Engine Systems (introduction into the principles of operation and the terms related to the internal combustion engine), and more. In addition, students will take lecture-based courses such as Occupational Health & Safety, College Communications, Organizational Behaviour, Auto body Estimating, Fixed Operations Management and more.

Meanwhile, the on-the-job feature of the automotive service technician training sees students working in a T.A.D.A dealership, where they apply everything they learned about vehicles to real-life situations. They also gain additional knowledge by working alongside experienced professionals who can share anecdotes and their own experiences. These professionals will also guide students in dealing with difficult customers and problem resolution. Many times, students are actually hired by the company at which they do their co-op placement.

No comments:

Post a Comment