It's been said that there's always work out there for a good mechanic, and automotive training schools in Tennessee can help you claim some of that work for yourself. Read on for the answers to some commonly asked questions about auto technician training in the Volunteer State and how it can lead to success in the job market.
How Many Jobs are out there for Tennessee Mechanics?
According to the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there were 12,350 working auto techs and mechanics in the state in 2014. The largest share of professionals working in the field were employed at auto repair and maintenance shops, car and truck dealerships and auto parts stores. Some, although fewer, worked at gas stations, car rental firms and local government agencies.
The BLS reports that auto mechanic career opportunity is likely to be easiest to find in urbanized areas, such as the regions around Nashville and Memphis. The Knoxville and Chattanooga areas were also fairly strong regions for auto mechanic career, despite them having fewer overall residents than the state's two largest cities.
What Can You Expect to Study at Automotive Schools in Tennessee?
The schedule of courses offered in auto mechanic training programs in Tennessee can take as many as two years to complete, particularly if your chosen program covers the full range of vehicle systems. Some automotive schools in Tennessee only require about one year of full-time study for a fairly comprehensive education, while others may allow students to study a single automotive system at a time.
Depending on the program, you may earn a certificate, a career diploma or an Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree upon graduating. Here are some of the subjects that typically compose part of auto mechanic schools' curriculum in Tennessee:
- Repair shop safety
- Engine performance
- Engine repair
- Heating and air conditioning
- Automotive electrical
- Suspension and steering
- Automatic transmissions
- Manual drive train and axles
Professional mechanics can continue to boost their knowledge and skills by earning certifications from the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). Not only do ASE credentials represent mastery of the mechanic's craft, but you can pursue certification in alternative fuels and other specialized areas that may not be offered during standard auto mechanic training in Tennessee.
How Much Can Graduates of Automotive Schools in Tennessee Earn?
There was a fairly wide range of average annual auto mechanic salaries across different states and regions of the country in 2014, with mechanics in Washington, D.C., earning the most and those in West Virginia taking home the least. Mechanics in Tennessee came in pretty close to the middle, with the BLS reporting an average annual salary of $37,540 ($3,128 per month).
The areas around particular cities also paid a range of salaries within the state:
|Nashville||$40,330 yearly, $3,361 per month|
|Memphis||$40,320 yearly, $3,360 per month|
|Jackson||$39,360 yearly, $3,280 per month|
|Chattanooga||$36,280 yearly, $3,023 per month|
|Knoxville||$36,200 yearly, $3,017 per month|
Tennessee auto mechanics in Clarksville earned the state's highest average in 2014, according to BLS data, with a mean yearly income of $41,120 ($3,427 per month).
What's the Job Outlook for Graduates of Auto Mechanic Schools in Tennessee?
Job growth is expected across the board for graduates of auto mechanic schools in Tennessee and elsewhere, especially in urbanized areas without extensive public transportation systems. Here's a list of the top 5 areas in Tennessee for auto mechanic job openings, according to data published by the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development:
- Nashville (Davidson County)
- Chattanooga (Hamilton County)
- Knoxville (Knox County)
- Franklin (Williamson County)
- Memphis (Shelby County)
Regardless of the region where you choose to start your job search, formally trained mechanics who understand all the latest vehicle systems should have the best prospects for employment. Those with a few years' experience or ASE certifications, also, tend to be better equipped for top-level jobs than those without them.
How Can You Enroll in Automotive at Schools in Tennessee?
Every institution is different, so the first step is usually making contact and finding out just what it takes to apply for their individual program. Check out a few automotive schools in Tennessee by browsing our listings below then reach out to learn the best way to proceed.
- Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics, Occupational Employment and Wages, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, accessed February 16, 2016, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes493023.htm
- School pages, accessed February 16, 2016: Automotive Technology, Tennessee College of Applied Technology Memphis, http://www.tcatmemphis.edu/fulltime-programs/automotive-technology; Automotive Technology, Chattanooga State Community College, https://www.chattanoogastate.edu/automotive-technology; Automotive Technology, Tennessee College of Applied Technology Elizabethton, http://www.tcatelizabethton.edu/campus-programs/automotive-technology;
- Test Series, National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence, accessed February 16, 2016, http://www.ase.com/Tests/ASE-Certification-Tests/Test-Series.aspx
- Occupational Profile, Automotive Master Mechanics, Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development, accessed February 16, 2016, https://www.jobs4tn.gov/vosnet/lmi/occ/occsummary.aspx?enc=e7AKr7bjUGRBEdrMte14UcGASDLPK35sJJ/TkTJAEXGQKTTeOAfnKvNkixKfDLOW7iWARP6mFzHR7BWRXYSJj3YbH5/82+YZNcASwapRlbwFBK9ZQBrQL6Br+TgW6/Fq
- Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, accessed February 16, 2016, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/installation-maintenance-and-repair/automotive-service-technicians-and-mechanics.htm