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Auto Mechanic Training - Turning a Hobby Into a Career
Making a Career Out of a Hobby
Tinkering with cars is a hobby for most people, but there's good money in becoming an auto mechanic, if you're willing to learn the ropes.
In this age of information and technology, with one can flip a switch can you can access a wealth of information. This increases the demand for information you would have never thought other people would want, but they do. This is why people are lending an ear to talk about turning their hobby into an online venture, and possibly a career.
Making Money From Your Hobby
In this hub we will focus on what it takes to go from tinkering with cars to a career in auto mechanics. Taking it from a backyard hobby and actually making money from it.
There are some people who frown on this transition, because they feel it takes the fun out of the hobby, but why can't it be both - profitable and fun too?
I believe the key here is differentiating between a job and a career. Would you consider a job as something you do for a paycheck and a career as something you do out of passion? They both make money but a career is a much longer goal, something more long-term.
When you think about becoming an auto mechanic you have to look at the full range of opportunities. Cars are not what they use to be, cars have more electronics in them and technology has made cars "more than just machines."
In this context we expand the job called "auto mechanic" to "auto technician," and this is where you find even more opportunities for your talents. There is no doubt that repairing cars is still looked at as a dirty job, but as you investigate all the employment opportunities in this industry, you will discover just how many opportunities exist that don't involve oil and grease.
The Difference Between a Job and a Career
When we look at the words "Job and Career," we want to look at the words that come before them.
Listen to how people address what they do: "I go to work or I work at a job."
Now, compare this to a career: "I'm building a career or my long term career goals are..."
Notice the difference? One is short term and one is long term. When a person talks about their career they speak in terms of building, this is almost like building a business. When people speak about their job it's like a routine, there is no tone of personal investment in it.
One of the reasons we address auto mechanics as a career, is because of stability and growth.
It seems very doubtful that auto maintenance will be outsourced, and the fact is cars will still break down and need repairing. The demand for auto mechanics will remain high and pay should be good throughout.
The other factor is, cars are evolving. Cars are more complex and this opens the door for opportunities that reach beyond repairing cars. Electronic, computers, sensors, systems, these are all things that have been incorporated in today's vehicles, and the general label of auto mechanic becomes much more specialized as cars become more integrated with the things mentioned above.
As industry experts see it, outsourcing auto repair is impossible and job security and wages both seem to be positioned for stability and growth going forward.
Training For a Career in Auto Mechanics
Even though you have an aptitude for repairing cars and you have a lot of hands on experience, most employers still want more formal training before they will talk to you. I know there are backyard mechanics that know more than shop mechanics, but that's the way it is.
So you need to get a collage diploma (from your local community collage) or a certificate of completion from a vocational/trade school.
Finding the Right School
The first step is finding a school, but not just any school, the right school.
Doing your homework upfront will save you a lot of headaches later on. Every school counselor tells you their school is the best, so don't waste your time with that question.
Online reviews can also be skewed if the review site gets a commission for referring people to a particular school, so this too could be a dead end.
You really have to do two things - first review your needs.
Are you working full time?
Will the schools schedule collide with your schedule?
How about costs?
Next, make life easy on yourself, go talk to your local dealers and auto repair shops. Talk to them about your ambitions and career plans, they know best which schools are highly regarded in the automotive community.
Just these two steps will make searching for a school a lot easier and save you from being "sold" on a training program. A program that may not hold any weight when it comes time to get a job.
The employment projections for auto mechanics is very favorable looking forward. If you look at it as a career and not a job, then it will be like building your own business; hey maybe you will have your own auto repair shop one day - think about it.