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August 9, 2013
So, why do you need to go to college and get a degree to be a mechanic?
The days of the shade tree mechanic are swiftly becoming a thing of the past. And it’s not because there is a lack of knowledge.
It’s the cars.
Just as computers have transformed from monsters that were once housed in entire buildings to a device that can fit in your pocket, cars have changed from a simple mechanical machine to a computer on wheels.
Auto mechanics in the traditional sense are fading away because cars are no longer just mechanical – they are electrical. Nearly every system in a modern car is electronic from the braking to the sensors for your windshield washer fluid level.
And it all changes every year.
A degree in automotive technology will teach you the basic mechanical information you need to understand how a car works. You will learn to rotate tires and do oil changes. But to accurately diagnose problems in today’s automobiles, you need the training on how the electrical systems work for engine performance, fuel systems and communications.
The modern automotive technician is more than a mechanic. The technician must also have a skillset similar to an electrical engineer and a computer programmer. Successful technicians have the “old-school” mechanic mindset, but they also have to know how to program modules to communicate with each other and understand how making things work electrically will affect the way they work mechanically.
Aside from gaining the necessary knowledge to work as a technician, seeking a degree can help you with something else. It can show your potential employers that you’re serious about going the extra mile to continue to learn and grow in your profession.