As a National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF) certified school, Gateway Technical College is recognized as upholding the highest quality training for an Automotive Technician program. The Automotive Maintenance Technician technical diploma and the Automotive Technology associate degree program provide the hands-on training and education you need for a successful career in an automotive repair facility or retail service center. Gateway's automotive training programs are taught at the Horizon Center for Transportation Technology. The state-of-the-art facility houses the latest in automotive training equipment and serves as a strategic hub for the Midwest’s transportation industry.
The 70 credit Automotive Technology associate degree program will prepare students for a career as an automotive line technician. The line technician can diagnose, repair and perform complex maintenance on automobiles and light trucks. The technician requires customer service skills as well as mechanical, electrical and professional skills to work on today’s hottest vehicles. Graduates can also obtain positions as parts and sales suppliers, testing technicians for manufacturers, manufacturer sales representatives, manufacturer trainers or a manager within a transportation-related field. During the program, students will become knowledgeable in engine performance, engine repair, manual and automatic drivelines, transmissions and transaxles, electrical systems and electronics. Graduates are prepared to take the Master ASE certification exam. The Master ASE certification shows potential employers and consumers that the technician is knowledgeable in the field of certification including the areas of the engine performance, light vehicle diesel engines and automatic transmission.
Learning By Doing
Gateway’s automotive classrooms and lab have the latest instructional technology, including LJ Create- an automotive training resource, which is specifically designed for teaching the skills needed for the next generation of vehicle technicians.
The automotive lab at the Horizon Center is a fully equipped auto repair shop, featuring lifts, state-of-the-art vehicle diagnostic, and repair equipment. Through a strong partnership with Snap-on Incorporated, the automotive lab houses the most up to date Snap-on equipment. Students will learn how to use the newest Snap-on diagnostic devices and obtain Snap-on certifications as well. Certifications include DVOM Meter, Ethos, Solus Pro, Vantage Pro, and Verus. These certifications will make students more marketable to potential employers.
Students are encouraged to join the Automotive club. This club provides students opportunities including; attending the Chicago Auto Show, creating their own auto show and attending several other student-run events. Students can also participate in community service projects and have the opportunity to act as mentors, guides, and judges at state and local automotive competitions held at Gateway.
- Students must submit an application and pay $30 fee.
- Students must complete reading, writing, and math skills placement assessments.
- Students must submit official high school, GED, or HSED transcript.
- Minimum 64 credits with an average of 2.0 or above.
- *Average of 2.0 (“C”) or above for these major courses.
For a complete list of Graduation Requirements, check the Student Handbook.
Graduates can have a successful career in an automotive repair facility or retail service center. A variety of job opportunities may be available depending on training and certifications including; automotive line technicians, parts and sale suppliers and testing technicians for manufacturers.
Many Gateway Automotive Technology students begin their careers at area automotive dealerships and repair facilities while in school and work while finishing their associate degree.
Industry Certification & Licensing
The Automotive Maintenance Technician diploma program prepares students to take up to four Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certification exams in the following areas; brakes, suspension and steering, heating and air conditioning and electrical systems.
Graduates of the Automotive Technology associate degree are prepared to take the Master ASE certification exam. The Master ASE certification shows potential employers and consumers that the technician is knowledgeable in the field of certification including the areas of the engine performance, light vehicle diesel engines and automatic transmission.
In addition, students will learn how to use the newest Snap-on diagnostic devices and obtain Snap-on certifications as well. Certifications include DVOM Meter, Ethos, Solus Pro, Vantage Pro, and Verus. These certifications will make students more marketable to potential employers.
Job & Salary Outlook
Job opportunities are expected to be very good for those who complete automotive training programs and earn ASE certifications. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics employment of automotive service technicians and mechanics is expected to increase by 17 percent between 2010 and 2020.
Graduates from the automotive technical diploma may find entry-level jobs in an auto repair shop with a pay range from $6 - $10 per hour. Graduates from the Automotive Technology associate degree may find a position as an auto line technician with an average hourly salary of $10 - $18. Many automotive technicians are also paid on commission related to labor cost while working at automotive retailers and other private repair shops. Due to the specialized training Gateway students receive, after five to ten years of experience, graduates may achieve annual salaries near $100,000.