Friday, September 28, 2012

Continuing Education: Where Life Commitments and School Meet

If you have ever considered advancing your education in order to take your career to the next level or entering an altogether new career, there is no time like the present to do so. The best part is that through Continuing Education options, you don't have to neglect your life responsibilities to complete your training. In collaboration with a college or university, a Continuing Education School is a place for adult learners to attend programs on a part-time basis — either by attending school on evenings and weekends or through Distance Learning correspondence.

One Canadian post-secondary institution that offers Continuing Education options is Centennial College, which is located in Toronto, Ont. Each year, this School of learning trains more than 22,000 learners in 140 programs with more than 1,300 courses and discussion-oriented classes that have resulted in a 97 per cent learner satisfaction rate.

The first option in Centennial College's Continuing Education School is to attend on-campus programs. This option is ideal for learners who wish to experience the classroom feel of a program, which may include partaking in projects, case studies, co-op features, field trips and more. In addition, the Continuing Education school at Centennial College provides experienced instructors who understand adult learning needs, offering flexible, learner-centered teaching methodologies; provides practical hands-on knowledge to place relevant theory into context and perspective; recognizes and respects both the level of maturity and work experience of its students; provides effective instructor to student ratio and an optimal classroom size enabling competent peer interaction. This on-campus Continuing Education option allow students to enter areas of interest such as: Accounting, Business, Computers and Information Technology, Early Childhood Education, Fitness, Media and Design, Transportation and more.

Alternatively, independent learners who may not have the time to devote to coming to campus have two options. They may either take on Distance Learning or Print Based Courses. The first option was designed with flexibility in mind and enables Continuing Education students to work through course material and assignments in their own time and space, with 24-hour access to the online classroom. Online course delivery saves travel time, while still offering similar in-person benefits of a physical classroom such as: a qualified and industry-experienced instructor, communication tools, discussion boards and forums, a sense of email access with your classmates, digital assignment capability, and more. The Print Based Courses, meanwhile, offer students the ability to work at their own pace, typically within a six-month time frame. Print-based courses are best suited to students who work independently with minimal supervision. In most cases, both delivery methods (online and PB) require that students attend the campus towards the end of their class to write a final exam.

All programs facilitated through the Continuing Education school have their own prerequisites and it's best to check each individual program's page to ensure that students have the necessary requirements to apply.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Communications Courses Play Important Role in Corporate Communications and Public Relations Program

Did you know that you can get the communication skills training you need to begin careers in both corporate communications and public relations just by attending one program? That’s because Centennial College’s two-semester Corporate Communications and Public Relations combines both areas for those who already possess a college diploma or university degree in any discipline.

Public relations manages the flow of information between an individual or an organization and the public. The aim of public relations by a company often is to persuade the public, investors, partners, employees and other stakeholders to maintain a certain point of view about it, its products or of political decisions. Meanwhile, corporate communications is the message issued by a corporate organization, body or institute to both internal (employees, stakeholders) and external (agencies, channel partners, media, government, industry bodies and institutes, educational and general public) associates. Corporate communications training helps an organization explain its mission, and combine its many visions and values into a cohesive message to stakeholders.

At Centennial College’s program, students obtain the communication skill training needed to excel in both areas of this field. Students are exposed to a variety of skills including: learning to research, write, plan, edit, design and implement everything from strategic communications plans and employee newsletters to gala dinners for hundreds of people. In addition, students study the importance of creating communications strategies that influence employee attitudes, shift stockholders’ opinions and tell an organization’s story to the media. Among the specific communications courses within this offering are: Public Relations Writing: Writing to Inform, Copy Editing, Business for Corporate Communications, Measurement and Metrics, Online Public Relations and Social Media, Presentation Skills and more.

Students of this communication skills training apply what they have learned in two ways prior to graduation. First, they attend a course called Client Project. Project work is completed outside the classroom, usually independently, with off-campus clients. The work is often for not-for-profits clients and can involve: strategic communications planning including the production of written and graphics pieces such as brochures, media kits or newsletters. Students are assigned a faculty advisor for the course and, typically, find their own clients. Secondly, communication skill training at Centennial College includes a field placement that sees students working fulltime for eight weeks (or longer) at a public relations agency, a not-for-profit, a government ministry or department, a corporation or an association to gain practical experience and knowledge. Many Field Placements are unpaid positions; others offer an honorarium.

Upon graduation from the communication skills training, as an entry-level communications specialists graduates find jobs with: public relations agencies, hospitals and health care providers, government ministries and agencies, trade associations, not-for-profit organizations, financial institutions and entertainment companies. Specific companies hiring students of this program include: Alliance Films, Argyle Communications, CTV, Government of Canada, Ontario Government, St. John’s Rehab Hospital and more.

Business Marketing Training Balances Theory and Practical Practice

A huge part of the college experience is obtaining hands-on training that will give you the cutting edge over the competition. With Product Marketing Training, this should be no different. That’s why Centennial College’s Business Administration – Marketing offering, which takes three years to complete, prides itself on offering students an ideal balance between practical practice and theory-based lectures.

For example, students of this Business Marketing training and Product Marketing Training partake in a  a real-life experience called an industry project feature. Participation includes students working in a team setting on a real project that is sponsored by an entrepreneurial endeavour, small business or major company. This is the students’ opportunity to show potential employers how well they work under pressure and in a professional situation.

Meanwhile, in their Business Marketing training courses, students gain the know-how in broad-based business concepts as well as specific training in marketing, including marketing research, marketing communications (which includes advertising and promotion), interactive marketing (which includes direct marketing, e-marketing and customer relationship management) and brand planning.

How does this work? A common first-year curriculum for most Centennial business programs provides students with the opportunity to obtain an overview of business prior to specializing in a specific area. Once students move past their first year, they partake in courses such as: Marketing Research, Practical Applications in Marketing, Professional Selling, Marketing Communications, Brand Management, Interactive Marketing and more.

Throughout all of their courses, students benefit from a dynamic and interactive environment that is facilitated by experienced faculty members who encourage learning through case studies, guest lectures, presentations, projects, and computer simulations and technologies.

As a result, students of this business marketing training go onto become sales representatives, direct marketing coordinators, marketing research analysts, sales and promotion coordinators, assistant product managers, and customer relationship managers. However, should students wish to obtain further Business Marketing training, they may do so through Centennial College’s partnerships, allow students to apply credits earned at Centennial towards further study at other institutions. Partners of this Business Marketing training program are: Athabasca University, Algoma University, Royal Roads University, Ryerson University, Davenport University, Northwood University, University of Lethbridge, Griffith University and University of New Brunswick.

To apply for Centennial College’s Business Marketing training and Product Marketing Training, students are required to have completed an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent, or mature student status (19 years or older); English Grade 12 C or U or equivalent, or skills assessment and Math Grade 11 C, M or U, or Grade 12 C or U or equivalent or skills assessment.

To graduate from Centennial College’s business marketing training, students must maintain a C grade average and an overall GPA of 2.0.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Toyota Technician Training Offers Benefits to Students and Employers

Automotive service technicians, service writers and advisors, service and parts managers, trainers and professors or automotive manufacturer specialists: These are just some of the titles students who complete the Toyota technician training at Centennial College can obtain. If you are interested in one of these positions and are already a Toyota Dealer apprentice, this Automotive Service Technician Toyota (MAP 32) is designed just for you.

Housed within Canada's transportation training hub, Ashtonbee Campus, this Toyota technician training program is completed in four eight-week blocks, alternating with apprenticeship work terms at students' Toyota dealer. Because of its location, all in-school training uses Toyota vehicles and components in fully-equipped automotive labs, giving the students that extra edge. During this time, students partake in the traditional apprenticeship curriculum, as well as additional training on Toyota products' description, operation, diagnostics and repair. Among the specific tasks students master during school sessions of their Toyota Technician training are: diagnosing problems using Toyota diagnostic equipment and performing repairs and preventive maintenance on engines, transmissions, electrical systems, brakes and tires. They also become comfortable with conducting vehicle inspections. In-school training covers eight weeks more material in greater depth than the traditional apprenticeship curriculum.

Once they are comfortable with certain aspects of the Toyota technician trade, students apply their knowledge to their workplace, where they work alongside professionals to learn more. With their newly acquired knowledge, they then return to in-school Toyota technician training and gain knowledge in more advanced topics. Students' training on Toyota products makes them productive immediately after completing each level of their training.

Toyota technician applicants must possess at minimum an Ontario Secondary School Diploma or a GED or equivalent. They are also required to be employed by a Toyota dealership or be selected through an interview process. If students are not employed at a Toyota dealership, they are required to find a sponsor for the hands-on portion of their training to begin classes. Canvassing local dealers for employment and eventually sponsorship would be a great place to start. Candidates for the Toyota technician training may apply to enter this program at various levels by contacting the Coordinator. Acceptance to Toyota technician training is based on successful completion of all entry requirements and space is limited. Please note that some students within the Toyota technician training at Centennial College may be eligible for Employment Insurance during the in-class aspect. It should also be noted that apprentices of Toyota technician training are currently eligible for up to $4,000 in various grants and tax incentives. Meanwhile, employers are eligible for up to $45,000 over four years in various federal and provincial tax incentives.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Distance Learning Offers Respected Credentials and Unique Experience

Distance Learning uses methods and technology to deliver teaching, often on an individual basis, to students who are not physically present in a traditional educational setting such as a classroom. It has allowed students with the many time constraints imposed by personal responsibilities and commitments to attend school. It also reduces the demand on institutional infrastructure such as buildings. As a result of completing Distance Learning programs, students may obtain post-secondary advanced diplomas, diplomas, certificates of completion and post-graduate certificates.

One institution that offers the Distance Learning option under its School of Continuing Education is Centennial College. In this alternative learning method, students have two options.

The first, more traditional, way of partaking in Distance Learning is through print-based courses, in which material is mailed to students. Upon registration in this Distance Learning option, participants receive a Registration Confirmation Letter, Proctor Information Form, Student Guide and all of the educational materials required to complete the course. This option is suitable for learners who may not be comfortable with using technology and prefer the comfort of a pen and paper. A print-based course offered through the School of Continuing Education consists of lessons, written assignments, exams and the various tools for success. This print-based distance learning experience allows students the flexibility to communicate with their instructor by email, phone, or regular mail. Print based courses are typically completed within a six-month time frame.

Certificate programs or courses that may be taken entirely by Distance Learning print-based correspondence include: Business Management – Entrepreneurial, Business Management – International, Business Management – Marketing, Cosmetics by Correspondence, Ophthalmic Medical Personnel - Phases 1 and 2 and SmartServe.

The other, and more increasingly popular, Distance Learning option at Centennial College entails partaking in online programs. This option sees students have 24-hour access to a virtual classroom. Students learn through communication with qualified instructors using online communication tools such as discussion boards and forums, and completing digital assignments. There is also a sense of classroom thanks to exchanging emails with their classmates. There are 40 online Distance Learning program options.

Among these options are: Office Bookkeeping, Applied Management Studies, Event Planning/Meeting Management, Automotive Service Advisor, Business Writing, Effective Project Management, Food Service Worker, Legal Office Assistant, Professional Writing, Software Specialist and more.

Whether they choose online programs or print-based ones, students of Distance Learning have to complete an in-person physical exam to gain their credentials. Students are responsible for writing their exam on the first Saturday following the course end date. It is their responsibility to book the correct exam date within the time constraints of their course. Students who fail to write their exam by the due date will receive a zero on their exam.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Computer Repair Certification Offers Credentials For Vital Industry

Today, there isn’t a whole lot that people don’t use computers for. From shopping online and finding a location to sending out emails and using social networking sites, computers are vital parts of our day-to-day lives. That’s why those who are interested in a career in computer repair benefit from attending a fast-paced Computer Repair program.

Once they enter the field, these computer repair program professionals work in a variety of areas including: personal computer support, sales and service; personal computer bench repair, upgrades and maintenance; operation and maintenance of computerized manufacturing equipment; and consumer electronic equipment sales and service. No matter which area they choose to enter, all computer repair professionals are required to know how to: identify why the machine has crashed or what has reduced its performance; ensure the client understands what has happened and how it can be avoided in the future; repair; use anti-virus software and having the ability to deal with spyware; install and configure any piece of hardware that a client wants to synch to the computer’s database; and more.

At Centennial College, those who have an interest in this field may obtain computer repair certification through the one-year Computer Repair and Maintenance undertaking. The focus of this undertaking is to offers students a practical approach to personal computer hardware and software installation, repair and maintenance by combining a broad range of computer-related courses with strong interpersonal skills training.

The Computer Repair program has been condensed into two semesters of learning, which consist of a total of 14 courses. The topics taught in these courses range from basic computer hardware theory, operating systems and application programs to maintaining strong customer relations, providing effective technical support and improving their employability. The balance between technology and business is essential to longevity in the field. Additionally, students obtain practical experience by installing, maintaining and applying trouble-shooting techniques. Opportunity also exists to work with a wide range of high-tech equipment.

Specific courses within the Computer Repair certification offering include: PC Hardware, PC Operating Systems, Introduction to Web Design, Network Technologies, Window Server Operating System, Customer Skills, Electricity For Computer Systems, Ethics in Technology and the Environment and more.

Those who successfully complete the Computer Repair certification have the opportunity to bridge to the second year of the Computer Systems & Networks Technician/ Technology programs. They are also positioned to pursue industry’s A+ Certification and Network+ program.

Applicants to the Computer Repair program are required to have completed at minimum an Ontario Secondary School Diploma or equivalent or be 19 years of age or older. They must also have obtained the compulsory English 12C or U credit or skills assessment, or equivalent and the Math 11M or U, or 12C or U or skills assessment, or equivalent.

Advertising Research Among Topics Covered in Advertising Account Management

In the world of advertising, advertising research plays a huge role. As such, Advertising Account Management sees companies and organizations employ advertising agencies to initiate, promote and maintain the presence of their products and messages in the public realm. The account manager represents the firm and interacts directly with clients. He must establish, maintain and cultivate the company/client relationship for the benefit of both the client and the firm itself. Additionally, those trained for this field may work within: advertising agencies, sales promotion, event marketing, interactive marketing, direct marketing, account planning, research, client marketing.

Specific tasks for those with advertising research and Advertising Account Management credentials vary from agency to agency, but typically involve: managing a portfolio of accounts, dealing with all aspects of an advertising campaign, researching new business leads and "pitching" ideas, achieving sales targets by using existing networks of industry contacts to generate revenue, leading project management activity, attending client meetings and completing administrative work, as required.

If you have already obtained a college diploma or university degree in any discipline but wish to either advance your career or switch careers completely, and have an interest in Advertising Account Management, you may want to consider Centennial College's three-semester offering. In addition to being able to present college or university transcripts, applicants must attend a mandatory program admission sessions during which they will complete a writing test and questionnaire. Please note that Centennial College will also consider applicants with partial post-secondary education (minimum of two years) and relevant work experience.

Because the program only takes three semesters to complete, it is fast-paced and geared towards mature learners who can study independently but also collaborate on team projects. In addition, on-site professional computer software, media planning and research systems are available to students at all times. Students are mentored through all their studies by a team of seasoned professionals as they build new skills and confidence for the industry.

Among the courses in which they partake are: Advertising Research, Professional Practice, Integrated Marketing Foundations, Account Management Practices, Media for Account Managers, Communications Agency Primer, Broadcast Production Basics Business Communications, and more.

Tilt – the student-run communications agency provides real experience while students are in school, which is a perfect lead up to a 15-week industry field placement. The on-the-job experience makes this the only post-grad Account Management program in Canada with a 15-week field placement that allows students to gain critical knowledge, professional relationships and work experience. Field placement also gives students the opportunity to use the skills and knowledge they have acquired in the previous two semesters of the program. Exposure to advertising agency personnel and the daily tasks they perform is a valuable, practical experience. Students select their own Account Management placement position in an advertising agency or closely related specialty area to match their career goals and interests.

Past graduates who have successfully completed their advertising research studies, have been hired by: Agency 59, Canadian Tire, Cossette Communications, Doner Canada, Draft FCB Toronto, J. Walter Thompson and more.

A Launching Pad for a Career in Early Childhood Education

Are you looking to attend one of Canada's college-level early childhood programs that will allow you to either pursue further education or enter the field right away? If so, look no further than Centennial College’s early childhood education program, which focuses on offering students the know-how to become Early Childhood Assistants. As such, after two semesters students can enter the field and find work as: child care assistants in child care centers, child care providers with licensed child care agencies, independent child care providers, and in-home nannies. If on the other hand, these students want more education in early childhood education, they may enter Centennial College’s two-year ECE program. In fact, between 10 and 33 per cent of graduates from the Early Childhood Assistant offering do so. Many of these students are exempt from some ECE courses as a result of attaining a high level of success in the ECA program. ECA graduates who have successfully completed the ECE program have also been accepted into Ryerson University or York University.

This early childhood education program is designed specifically for mature students, ESL students and those with learning disabilities. Thanks to this design, classrooms are small, there is a hands-on approach and faculty members encourage a learning environment in which support is offered to students on an on-going basis.

This Centennial College early childhood education offering boasts one or two major assignments, a mid-term and a final test per course as well as presentations, small group assignments and in-class workshop participation. Specific topics covered within the early childhood education courses include: professionalism, infant and toddler development, the learning environment, health and wellbeing, guiding children's behaviour, preschool and school-age learning, and more. All of these learning elements work together to prepare students for two practicum experiences. Some field placement agencies require a criminal reference check prior to student placement. Certain criminal convictions may disallow placement in these agencies and program completion may not be possible. Students must also have a clear medial report to participate.

As a result of the early childhood program, students have the knowledge to: plan and implement individual programs and curriculum to meet the developmental needs of children; utilize a variety of observation techniques to enhance work with children, families and co-workers; maintain responsive relationships with individual children and groups of children; establish and maintain safe and healthy environments that best meet the requirements of current legislation, regulatory bodies and program policies; develop and maintain effective written, oral, non-verbal and electronic communications with children, families, co-workers, employers and individuals/ agencies; apply relevant legislation, policies, procedures and regulations to early childhood education programs and settings in a changing social context; and more.

If you are interested in applying for this specific early childhood program, you are required to have completed an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent, or mature student status (19 years or older); and English Grade 12 or skills assessment. Applicants are also required to attend a program admission session.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Food Service Program Offers Vital Industry Know-How

Food and Nutrition Management professionals are needed in a number of areas including: institutional and/or health care food service settings such as long term care, retirement homes, acute care, and/or industrial cafeterias. Additionally, those who complete a post-secondary program such as Centennial College’s Food Service Worker program have the required certificate to pursue a career as a Dietary Aide in long-term care. Potential positions exist in nursing homes, homes for the aged, retirement homes, special care homes, hospitals, residential hospice, residential group home facilities and other integrated care facilities.

But what are the duties of these Food and Nutrition Management experts? First and foremost, they must be able to communicate the role of nutrition and apply the principles of human nutrition to food production in the health care food service environment. Hand-in-hand with this first duty is the ability to discuss the standards and principles of diet therapy relating to a variety of illnesses and diseases and apply these principles to the assembly of therapeutic meals in the health care food service environment. Additionally, graduates of a food service program are responsible for: providing a safe and health dietary environment; carrying out cost control techniques in the preparation of food service in the healthcare environment; applying food and bake theories to all aspects of food preparation in health care; implementing cooking principles and techniques in the preparation of large quantities of various foods for the healthcare environment; and more.

Centennial College's Food Service Worker program (as it is officially known) provides students all the knowledge and skills listed above, which enables them to be effective members of an inter-professional health care team. This is achieved in two ways. First and foremost, the food service program incorporates classroom lectures and hands-on learning to cover practical aspects of quantity food preparation, meal service, basic therapeutic diets and nutrition, proper sanitation practices, effective communication and quality customer service.

Secondly, students have the opportunity to apply what they have learned on-campus to a food service program field placement in a health care facility. Field placement enables learners to better understand the dynamics of the industry increase their knowledge of industry practices and provides a competitive advantage of experience in the job market.
To partake in this food service program feature, students must have a mandatory two-step mantoux test (TB skin test) within 12 months of starting the program, even if you have had BCG, as well as influenza immunization and a vulnerable persons’ police check.

Students in the food service program may transfer into the two-year Food and Nutrition Management diploma program if desired. In addition, graduates of this program obtain the TrainCan Basics Food Safety Certificate, which is accepted by Toronto Public Health as an equivalent to their Food Handlers Certificate.

Accounting Clerk – Microcomputer Program Prepares Students for Numerous Careers

Imagine attending one program and being trained to work in four different positions. This is possible for those who successfully complete Centennial College’s Accounting Clerk – Microcomputer offering, which lasts just one year. As a result of their training, Centennial College grads may work as: Accounting Clerks, Administrative Assistants, Bookkeepers and Accounts Receivable/ Payable Clerks. While these jobs differ, all accounting clerk professionals must be able to: maintain files, accounts payable and other such documentation; key daily worksheets to the general ledger system; print daily accounts payable checks and insert checks and invoices into envelopes for mailing; maintain regular contact with other departments to obtain and convey information and/or to correct transactions; audit daily sales reports; prepare checks and payroll; and more.

All of these accounting clerk skills are taught at Centennial College’s Accounting Clerk program. If this field appeals to you, you may apply for the undertaking as long as you possess at least an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent or are 19 years of age or older; and have completed the compulsory English 12C or U or skills assessment, or equivalent and math 11C, M or U or 12C or U or skills assessment, or equivalent. However, please note that possession of minimum admission requirements does not guarantee admission to the accounts payable clerk offering.

Once you are accepted, you will enter a learner-focused offering. As such, the Accounting Clerk program boasts flexibility in its curriculum design and most members of the Accounting faculties are professional accountants with solid industry experience. These instructors guide students through a leading edge information technology infrastructure with many classes taught in a lab environment that is fully equipped with an integrated network of computer systems. With the use of this technology, students learn the latest accounting clerk software, including Simply Accounting for Windows and the GL, A/R and A/P modules for ACCPAC for Windows. Also covered are topics such as process and store payroll, accounts receivable and accounts payable information. Specific Accounting Clerk courses include: Financial Accounting (two levels), Taxation, Business Operations, Microcomputer Applications Software (two levels), Payroll, Small Business Software, Management Accounting and Accounting Microcomputer Applications. Many courses are qualified for exemptions with the Canadian Institute of Bookkeeping (CIB). Lastly, an overview of other business functions in an organization is provided

Please note that transferring from the Accounting Clerk into another accounting program not only possible but also made easy for students.

Reliable Digital Animation Program Offers Sought-after Skills

There is nothing more powerful than a testimonial from someone who has attended a post-secondary program. Consider then that Bruno Amezcua trained in one of Canada’s digital animation programs at Centennial Colleges and had this to say: "When I decided to come to Centennial, I brought with me the highest expectations. Each and every expectation was exceeded. At Centennial College’s Digital Animation program, I found an amazing top-level educational and training program. My instructors are state-of-the-art professionals working and creating the coolest CG, animated series and video games in Canada. They taught what I'd need to know as a working professional in the industry, and today I'm already part of a great and successful team of digital media producers."

To expand on Bruno's glowing review, Centennial College’s Digital Animation program was established in 1966 and although it has evolved with the time, it focuses on preparing students for work in animating and creating visual effects for feature films, television shows and interactive games. A unique project-based learning experience that is well recognized within the animation and visual effects industry is executed in this offering with students obtaining life drawing, acting for animation and storyboard training. As such, classes do not exceed 15 people and students have ample opportunity to speak with instructors as they work on their projects. Additionally, students in the program have the option of practicing outside of class time thanks to access to a lab that is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Meanwhile, specific courses within the Digital Animation program include: Short Film Concept Development, Rendering and Lighting, Tracking and Roto, 3D Character Animation, Sculpting and Acting for Animation, Modeling and Rigging and many others.

This is all great practice for a Final Project Studio course that sums up everything students have learned in the previous semesters. This is the final step before students head out on their Digital Animation field placement. During the eight-week experience, students apply their knowledge and skills in a professional setting. Students must pass all courses (minimum mark of 60 per cent in each course), before they can qualify for the field placement. As a result of their time in the digital animation program and field placement, students produce a demo reel to showcase their abilities.

Those interested in applying for the Digital Animation program, are required to have finished at minimum an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent or be 19 years of age or older. They are also required to possess compulsory English 12C or U credit or skills assessment, or equivalent. Lastly, English proficiency, a program admission session and a portfolio review are required. These portfolios may include 10 to 15 pieces such as illustration, photography, video animation, computer generated artwork, music, performance art or publishing.

Wheel Alignment Technician and Brake Technician Training Combined in Hands-on Approach

All the skills you need to become either a wheel alignment technician or brake technician — or both — can be attained at Centennial College’s Alignment and Brake Technician offering. As such, graduates of this offering go on to work at vehicle and parts manufacturers, dealers, garage retailers, governments, corporations with their own fleets and in self-employment

But how does this alignment technician and brake technician-focused program get students from novices to field-ready professionals? First and foremost, the training consists of three training periods of 1,800 hours with an employer; and two eight-week college sessions. This program length proves to be longer than that of a traditional apprenticeship, resulting in more in-depth knowledge about the wheel and steering and braking systems in relation to vehicle control and stability than students would obtain in a traditional apprenticeship.

Secondly, during the time they spend on campus attending wheel alignment technician and brake technician courses, students are trained by instructors with field experience, which allows them to advise students and share their own experiences. Thirdly, all alignment technician and brake technician topics are taught through theory and hands-on practice. This occurs from Centennial College’s Ashontee Campus, which is the biggest automotive training centre in the country. Specific courses within this offering include: Work Practices, Suspension & Steering Systems, Tires, Wheels, Hubs & Alignment; and Brake Systems.

Skills that those with an interest in becoming a wheel alignment technician obtain include: repairing or replacing defective ball joint suspensions, braking shoes, or wheel bearings; aligning wheels, axles, frames, torsion bars, and steering mechanisms of automobiles; using special alignment equipment and wheel-balancing machines; and more. Meanwhile, among the skills a future brake technician learns are are: performing diagnostic tests and determining common brake problems, repairing and replacing brakes, and performing routine brake maintenance. Both types of professionals may also be required to test drive customer vehicles.

After attending alignment technician and brake technician courses, students apply what they have learned by spending time with their employers.

To apply for the alignment technician and brake technician course at Centennial College, you are required to possess at minimum an Ontario Secondary School Diploma or equivalent. In addition, you must currently be employed as an apprentice in the field. You cannot apply directly to the College or for admission to this apprenticeship program. For general information about apprenticeship registration, please contact the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities. It is also important to note that wheel alignment technicians and brake technicians who take the program and are already working in the field, may be eligible to qualify for income support through Employment Insurance Canada benefits or training allowance while they perform their in-school alignment technician and brake technician sessions.