Monday, March 14, 2011

Enter the Automotive Sector as an Alignment Technician Quickly with Centennial College

The job of a wheel alignment and brake technician is one of the most important in the automotive industry. This person is responsible for ensuring your safety if you brake hard to avoid a squirrel running across the street, sharply turn the wheel to miss a pothole or just have to drive in rainy or snow weather conditions. Because we don’t often think of these safety issues, wheel alignment technicians and brake technicians do so for us with their experience and education.

The education of an alignment technician begins by attending a post-secondary institution that offers an apprenticeship. One such program is Centennial College’s Alignment and Brake Technician Level 1 Apprenticeship, which is completed by participating in 3 training periods of 1,800 hours with an employer and 2 eight-week college sessions. The amount of time students spend in the program is designed to provide them with in-depth knowledge of the wheel and steering and braking systems in relation to vehicle control and stability. Also covered is the repair of a variety of braking systems. These in-school sessions of the brake technicians and alignment technician training are conducted by some of the province’s most well trained professors, who guide students through demonstrations and their own personal experiences. In addition, students study out of Ashtonbee Campus, which houses the biggest automotive training centre in the country. This ensures that students are studying with state-of-the-art equipment. While students are performing their in-school duties, they may be eligible to qualify for income support through Employment Insurance Canada benefits or training allowance.

Meanwhile, during the alignment technician sessions with employers, students gain real-world experience that they can then feature proudly on their resumes. The employer sessions also give students a chance to learn hands-on customer service so that they are confident in all areas of the field upon graduation.

In order to apply to the Alignment and Brake Technician program, students must have an Ontario Secondary School Diploma or equivalent. They must also be employed as an apprentice. Lastly, students cannot apply directly to the college or for admission. To learn more about the application process, check out the Alignment and Brake Technician admission requirements page.

Upon graduation, Alignment and Brake Technicians find work with vehicle and parts manufacturers, dealers, garage retailers, governments, corporations with their own fleets, and through self-employment. They have the very important jobs of ensuring that the braking system and steering wheels in vehicles meet the appropriate safety standards for a car to hit the road. They are also responsible for understanding the sophisticated and complex systems of newer models. Specifics tasks of these wheel alignment technicians and brake technicians include providing service that includes operating equipment such as grinders, brake lathes and bleeders, hoists, alignment machines, strut compressors, air guns, bearing packers, and installing brakes, shocks, struts and front end parts. They are also required to test drive customer vehicles.

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