There were nearly 11 million vehicles registered in New York in 2014, and skilled auto mechanics are needed all over the state to make sure they stay in service and on the roads. If you've ever wanted to join the ranks of trained mechanics and master technicians in the Empire State, training at auto mechanic schools in New York might be the right move for you.
Auto Mechanic Career Opportunity in the State of New York
A survey of online job postings reveals that there are hundreds of ways to start your auto mechanic career in New York. Jobs are open in in New York City, Buffalo, Albany, Rochester, Syracuse and other cities throughout the state, waiting for skilled technicians to apply and demonstrate the skills they learned in school.
Some auto mechanic schools in New York also offer courses in business, accounting, entrepreneurship and other important knowledge areas for students who hope to go into business for themselves. Whatever direction you're hoping to take your career, there's a program somewhere in the state that can help you get there, and here are some facts about a mechanic career outlook.
Auto Mechanic Training and Certification in NY
Graduating from auto mechanic programs in New York can take anywhere from two years or more for a full-fledged associate degree to just a few months for a course covering single automotive system. Graduates hoping to enhance their skills and work toward Master Automobile Technician status can test for a series of professional certifications at the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), including the following:
- Engine repair
- Automatic transmission/transaxle
- Manual drive train and axles
- Suspension and steering
- Electrical/electronic systems
- Heating and A/C
- Engine performance
Technical schools, career academies, community colleges and other two-year institutions are typically the best places to look for auto mechanic training and certification in New York, although some brand-specific dealerships may have in-house training programs and certain independent garages may offer apprenticeship opportunities. Learn more about auto mechanic training and certification here.
Auto Mechanic Salary of Auto Mechanics and Technicians in NY
A variety of factors may influence the salary expectations of individual graduates of auto mechanic schools in New York. Those with more time on the job, more education, more comprehensive certifications or a set of specialized skills may command higher wages than those whose expertise is less well-rounded.
Geographical location plays into decisions about auto mechanic salary in New York, as well, with some metropolitan areas in the state paying much higher mean annual wages than others. Here are some mean annual salary figures for a few different metro areas, according to data published by the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS):
- Nassau-Suffolk: $41,710
- New York-White Plains: $43,210
- Kingston: $41,520
- Albany-Schenectady-Troy: $40,430
- Rochester: $39,450
- Buffalo-Niagara Falls: $34,150
- Elmira: $35,460
- Ithaca: $34,630
- Syracuse: $36,720
The statewide mean annual auto mechanic salary in New York was $39,430 in 2014, according to BLS data, which works out to average monthly wages of about $3,285.
Auto Mechanic and Automotive Jobs in New York
New York employed the fourth-highest statewide number of auto mechanics and service technicians in the U.S. in 2014, according to BLS data. Car dealerships and local governments combined to employ more than 70 percent of the total mechanic workforce nationwide, with parts stores, tire shops, gas stations and local government agencies employing 16 of the remaining 30 percent.
The New York State Department of Labor projects that auto mechanic jobs in New York will increase at a rate of 7.4 percent between 2012 and 2022, about one percentage point slower than the national average growth rate forecast in the field by the BLS. That 7.4 percent growth, however, is expected to create nearly 3,000 new positions during the projection period, bringing the total number of auto mechanic jobs in New York to 42,590 by 2022.
Interview with Kent Johnson about Auto Mechanic Careers in NY
We talked to Kent Johnson, associate professor and chair of the automotive trades department at Alfred State, a SUNY College of Technology in Alfred, NY, about auto mechanic programs in New York and the ways in which they can help students succeed in the workforce.
Q: How does one become an auto mechanic? Is there one direct path, or are there many different options?
A: There are many different levels of technicians, so the training required really depends on what the technician is expected to do. A technician at a "quick lube" facility for example, in most cases could probably be taught everything he needs to know to do the job in-house; a technician working at a dealership that is expected to diagnose and repair electronic systems and/or transmission concerns however, is going to need a lot more training.
Q: What type of degree/certificate do mechanics in New York typically need?
A: When prospective students come here to see our program, I generally tell them that they should visit as many schools as possible to determine what is important to them. Alfred State offers a two-year AOS (Associates of Occupational Studies) degree. This is primarily a hands-on degree in that the students spend 4.5 hours daily working in the labs, and 1.5 hours daily in the classroom focused on vehicle repair related topics. Some schools offer AAS degrees (Associates of Applied Science) which include liberal arts requirements, but typically offers less hands-on lab practice, and some schools offer shorter certificate programs. There are pros and cons to all three, so it really depends on what is important to the individual and what job they are trying to get.
Q: What are the preferred qualities/skills of an auto mechanic?
- They need to be well trained with a desire to continue learning
- They need to be thinkers and problem solvers
- They need strong work ethics
- They need to be able to communicate and they need people skills
- They need to be focused on professionalism
These are all qualities that the automotive department at Alfred State works very hard to instill in our students.
Q: Why would you recommend someone enter this career field?
A: The job opportunities are endless. Almost anywhere a good technician wants to work and live, heor she should be able to find employment.
Q: What's some advice you would give to someone just starting out on the path to an auto mechanic career?
A: I would advise that they don't stop learning as this business changes almost daily; I would suggest they focus on professionalism in the way that they look and act, not only around customers, but their supervisors and peers as well; lastly I would tell them to spend the money on the right tools to do the job - they'll get it back in the long run.
How to Enroll in an Automotive School in New York?
Every auto mechanic needs training, and earning a degree or diploma from one of the many reputable auto mechanic programs in New York is a great way to get training that you know will measure up to the standards of any shop in the industry. Start your search for auto mechanic schools in New York, including diesel mechanic schools in NY, by browsing the listings below or to the side and finding out what's available at programs near you.
- Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics, Employment Trends by Occupation Across States, Career InfoNet, accessed October 27, 2015, http://www.careerinfonet.org/carout3.asp?optstatus=001000000&id=1&nodeid=2&soccode=493023&stfips=01&jobfam=49&menuMode=&order=Percent
- Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, accessed October 27, 2015: Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/installation-maintenance-and-repair/automotive-service-technicians-and-mechanics.htm; Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes493023.htm;
- Auto Mechanic Jobs in NY, CareerBuilder, accessed October 27, 2015, http://www.careerbuilder.com/jobseeker/jobs/jobresults.aspx?qb=1&n_SB%3Asbkw=auto+mechanic&n_SB%3As_freeloc=new+york
- Auto Mechanic Jobs in New York, Indeed, accessed October 27, 2015, http://www.indeed.com/jobs?q=Auto+Mechanic&l=New+York
- Auto Mechanic Jobs in New York, Monster, accessed October 27, 2015, http://jobsearch.monster.com/search/?q=Auto-Mechanic&where=new-york
- Kent W Johnson, Alfred State Staff Directory, http://www.alfredstate.edu/users/johnsokw