Becoming a Mechanic or Automotive Technician in Kansas

To become an auto mechanic or truck mechanic in Kansas, all you really need is a willingness to learn and be trained. There are no official educational requirements, but it helps to get a certificate or two-year degree before seeking a job. With that education you can expect to land a great entry-level position at which your training will continue on the job. Then, you can get certified and be ready to work just about anywhere and to earn an even better income. [En Español]

The Job Outlook for Mechanics in Kansas

Job growth in the automotive technology and repair industry is strong, growing at six percent and with thousands of new jobs expected to be available between now and 2026, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). In 2017, the BLS recorded that there were 6,230 automotive service technicians working in Kansas, with the highest number working in Kansas City. There were also 2,760 bus and truck mechanics and 1,220 body and collision repairers.

Salary Expectations for Kansas Auto Mechanics

According to the BLS, the average annual salary for a mechanic in Kansas in 2017 was $39,380. For truck mechanics, who have additional training and skills, it was $43,590. The top earners in these areas made an average of $59,990 and $61,940, respectively. This reflects the fact that there is a lot of room to advance, specialize and use experience to earn a greater income. In 2017, the highest paid auto and truck mechanics in Kansas were in St. Joseph and Wichita.

Salaries in Kansas by Occupation

OccupationTotal EmployedAverage Hourly WageAverage Annual SalaryLowest 10%Highest 10%
Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics5,860$18.35$38,160$21,610$59,120
Automotive Body and Related Repairers1,210$20.63$42,900$21,900$64,430
Automotive Glass Installers and Repairers**$16.05$33,380$27,040$40,380
Bus and Truck Mechanics and Diesel Engine Specialists2,550$21.10$43,890$28,900$62,560

Auto Mechanic Salaries in Kansas by Region

RegionTotal EmployedMean Hourly WageMean Annual Salary
Region4,860$20.34$42,320
Lawrence, KS220$16.46$34,230
Manhattan, KS210$15.58$32,400
Manhattan, KS320$20.80$43,270
Topeka, KS500$19.06$39,650
Wichita, KS1,200$20.34$42,300

Automotive Technology Programs in Kansas

Programs for automotive service technicians and truck and diesel mechanics are accredited by the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF). Those for high school students are accredited by Automotive Youth Educational Systems (AYES). There are several accredited programs in Kansas for adult students and those still in high school.

Automotive programs that prepare students to work as mechanics or in body repair are accredited by NATEF. They may offer certificates, diplomas or two-year associate degrees, in general automotive technology or in specialty areas. Some also offer manufacturer-specific programs to prepare students to work in those dealerships.

  • Kansas City Kansas Community College. Accredited by NATEF, this program offers students a quick pathway to entry-level work and on-the-job training as a mechanic. There are three automotive technology certificate programs, and students can choose to do one or to complete all of them in order for a total of 53 credits. To complete just the first certificate costs about $2,268 for in-state students and takes about four months. To complete all three costs $5,724 and takes just under a year.
  • Pittsburg State University. Located in Pittsburg, Kansas, this school’s automotive program is unique in that it offers both a two-year associate degree and a four-year bachelor’s degree in automotive technology. Furthermore, the school partners with Flint Hills Technical College in Emporia to offer students who completed the associate degree there to transfer credits and earn Pittsburg’s bachelor’s degree in automotive technology. The four-year program is one of the best of its kind in the country, and students in either program can participate in automotive or diesel internships for hands-on work experience.
  • Manhattan Area Technical College. Students in and around Manhattan, Kansas, can earn a two-year associate degree in automotive technology at this NATEF-certified program. Students here can also transfer their credits to Pittsburg to earn a four-year degree. Manhattan offers preparation for National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certification in electronic systems, engine performance, engine repair, suspension and steering, brakes and several other areas of specialty.

Some of the schools that offer programs for high school students include Wichita Area Technical College in Wichita, Washburn Institute of Technology in Topeka, Olathe Advanced Technical Center in Olathe and Hutchinson Career and Technical Education Academy in Hutchison.

ASE Certification

A program in automotive technology or diesel technology does not culminate in ASE certification, although it does put students on the path to achieving it. ASE certification can be achieved in a number of specialties, and to take the exam requires at least one year of work experience plus the completion of a degree or certificate program or two years of work experience with no degree.

Working as an Auto Mechanic in Kansas

There are plenty of opportunities to work as an automotive service technician or a truck mechanic in Kansas. Areas of highest employment include Kansas City, Wichita and Topeka. There are also positions in smaller cities and rural areas.

Students who have completed education programs can expect to be hired for entry-level jobs and additional training at dealerships, repair centers, body shops, service centers and garages. With a willingness to learn and be trained, you can become a mechanic in Kansas and have a great career working with your hands and helping people every day.

Popular Colleges

College Programs

Kansas City, MO-KS Area

Johnson County Community College

12345 College Blvd, Overland Park, Kansas 66210-1299
(913) 469-8500
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

Johnson County Community College’s Certificate program is based at their campus in the city of Overland Park, KS. The majority of of the school’s 19,091 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Furthermore, the college has NATEF program accreditation. Tuition fees for in-district students are generally around $2,790 and are $3,300 and $6,600 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively, while books and supplies may cost roughly $1,560, although this varies from program to program.

Kansas City Kansas Community College

7250 State Ave, Kansas City, Kansas 66112
(913) 334-1100
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

Kansas City Kansas Community College’s Certificate program in Automotive Technology is offered at their campus in the city of Kansas City, KS. Most of the school’s 5,625 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Additionally, the college has NATEF program accreditation. The cost of tuition for students living in the state is roughly around $3,240 and for out-of-state students around $8,040 for each academic year, while study materials may cost roughly $1,346, depending on the program.

Kansas nonmetropolitan area Area

Barton County Community College

245 NE 30th Road, Great Bend, Kansas 67530
(620) 792-2701
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Automotive Technology at Barton County Community College is taught at their campus in Great Bend in Barton County, KS. This public college has about 4,815 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Additionally, the college has NATEF program accreditation. The cost of tuition for students living in the state is around $3,328 and for out-of-state students around $4,320 for each academic year, while study materials may cost roughly $1,364, depending on the program.

Coffeyville Community College

400 W 11th St, Coffeyville, Kansas 67337-5064
(620) 251-7700
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

Coffeyville Community College’s Certificate program in Automotive Technology is based at their campus in the town of Coffeyville, Kansas. Most of the school’s 1,740 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Furthermore, the college has NATEF program accreditation. Tuition fees for in-state students are around $2,304 and for out-of-state students approximately $3,872 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $900, although this will depend on the program.

Cowley County Community College

125 S 2nd St, Arkansas City, Kansas 67005
(620) 442-0430
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Automotive Technology at Cowley County Community College is taught at their campus in the town of Arkansas City, KS. This public college has round 3,083 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Additionally, the college has NATEF program accreditation. Tuition fees for in-district students are generally around $2,759 and are $3,069 and $4,526 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively. Books and supplies can cost around $2,000, although this will depend on the program.

Dodge City Community College

2501 N 14th Ave, Dodge City, Kansas 67801-2399
(620) 225-1321
Automobile Technology – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Automobile Technology at Dodge City Community College is taught at their campus in the town of Dodge City, KS. Most of the school’s 1,779 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for in-district students is likely to be in the order of $2,100 and are $3,210 and $3,450 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively, while study materials may cost roughly $1,200, depending on the program.

Flint Hills Technical College

3301 W 18th St, Emporia, Kansas 66801-5957
(620) 343-4600 x1300
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Automotive Technology at Flint Hills Technical College is offered at their campus in the town of Emporia. Most of the school’s 944 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Additionally, the college has NATEF program accreditation. The cost of tuition is usually in the order of $5,848 yearly. Study materials can cost about $1,700, depending on the program chosen.

Garden City Community College

801 Campus Dr, Garden City, Kansas 67846-6333
(620) 276-7611 x571
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

Garden City Community College’s Certificate program in Automotive Technology is offered at their campus in the town of Garden City, KS. Most of the school’s 2,099 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Fees for tuition for in-state students are in the order of $2,880 and for students from outside the state likely to be about $3,488 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $1,100, although this varies from program to program.

Hutchinson Community College

1300 N Plum St, Hutchinson, Kansas 67501
(620) 665-3500
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Automotive Technology at Hutchinson Community College is offered at their campus in the town of Hutchinson. This public college has around 5,546 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Additionally, the college has NATEF program accreditation. The cost of tuition for in-district students is likely to be in the order of $2,976 and are $3,296 and $4,288 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively. Study materials can cost about $1,000, depending on the program chosen.

North Central Kansas Technical College

3033 US Highway 24, Beloit, Kansas 67420
(785) 738-2276
Automotive Technology – Associate Program

The Associate’s degree program in Automotive Technology at North Central Kansas Technical College is offered at their campus in Beloit in Mitchell County. Most of the school’s 900 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Furthermore, the college has NATEF program accreditation. The cost of tuition is usually in the order of $5,696 yearly. Study materials can cost about $1,490, depending on the program chosen.

Northwest Kansas Technical College

1209 Harrison St, Goodland, Kansas 67735
(785) 890-3641
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program, Automotive Technology – Associate Program

Northwest Kansas Technical College offers multiple training options, including a Certificate program and an Associate program. All programs are offered at their campus in the town of Goodland, KS. Most of the school’s 779 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Furthermore, the college has NATEF program accreditation. Tuition fees for the Automotive Technology program are usually in the order of $16,400 yearly. Study materials can cost about $5,370. Typically, the program is completed in 18 months.

Pittsburg State University

1701 S Broadway, Pittsburg, Kansas 66762
(620) 231-7000
Automotive Technology – Associate Program

Pittsburg State University offers various Associate program options for mechanics. Classes are taken at their campus in the town of Pittsburg, KS. Of the 7,244 students, about 16% are postgraduates. The university is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Furthermore, the university has NATEF program accreditation. Tuition fees for in-state students are about $6,910 and for students from other states approximately $17,662 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $1,000, although this will depend on the program.

Pratt Community College

348 NE SR 61, Pratt, Kansas 67124
(620) 672-5641
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

Pratt Community College’s Certificate program is offered at their campus in Pratt in Pratt County. This public college has around 1,189 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Furthermore, the college has NATEF program accreditation. Fees for tuition for in-district students are usually about $3,232 and are $3,332 and $3,720 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively. Learning materials may cost in the order of $2,000, although this will vary with the program.

Salina Area Technical College

2562 Centennial Road, Salina, Kansas 67401
(785) 309-3100
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

Salina Area Technical College offers various Certificate program options for mechanics. Classes are taken at their campus in the town of Salina, Kansas. Most of the school’s 524 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Furthermore, the college has NATEF program accreditation. The cost of tuition is usually in the order of $6,493 yearly. Study materials can cost about $81, depending on the program chosen.

Seward County Community College

1801 N. Kansas Ave., Liberal, Kansas 67901
(620) 624-1951
Automotive Mechanics Technology – Certificate Program

Seward County Community College offers various Certificate program options for mechanics. Classes are taken at their campus in the town of Liberal. The college has around 1,971 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Fees for tuition for in-district students are usually about $2,848 and are $2,976 and $4,064 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively. Learning materials may cost in the order of $800, although this will vary with the program.

Manhattan, KS Area

Manhattan Area Technical College

3136 Dickens Ave, Manhattan, Kansas 66503-2499
(785) 587-2800
Automotive Technology – Associate Program

The Associate’s program in Automotive Technology at Manhattan Area Technical College can be taken at their campus in the city of Manhattan, KS. Most of the school’s 870 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Additionally, the college has NATEF program accreditation. Fees for tuition are generally about $5,640 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $2,110, although this will depend on the program.

St. Joseph, MO-KS Area

Highland Community College

606 W Main, Highland, Kansas 66035-4165
(785) 442-6000
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

Highland Community College offers various Certificate program options for mechanics. All programs are based at their campus in Highland in Doniphan County. This public college has about 3,343 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for in-district students is likely to be in the order of $3,007 and are $3,457 and $3,457 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively, while books and supplies may cost about $600, although this varies from program to program.

Topeka, KS Area

Washburn Institute of Technology

5724 SW Huntoon, Topeka, Kansas 66604-2117
(785) 273-7140
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

The Automotive Technology Certificate program in Automotive Technology at Washburn Institute of Technology is offered at their campus in the city of Topeka, KS. The majority of of the school’s 1,330 students are on diploma programs of under two years. The college is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Furthermore, the college has NATEF program accreditation. Fees for tuition are about $6,192 for each academic year. Learning materials may cost roughly $1,000, although this will vary with the program.

Wichita, KS Area

Butler Community College

901 S Haverhill Rd, El Dorado, Kansas 67042-3280
(316) 321-2222
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

Butler Community College’s Certificate program in Automotive Technology is taught at their campus in the town of El Dorado. Most of the school’s 8,950 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Additionally, the college has NATEF program accreditation. Tuition fees for in-district students are usually around $2,750 and are $3,080 and $4,880 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively. Learning materials may cost in the order of $1,200, although this will vary with the program.

Vatterott College-Wichita

8853 E. 37th Street N., Wichita, Kansas 67226
(316) 634-0066
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program

Vatterott College offers various Certificate program options for mechanics. Classes are taken at their Wichita campus in the city of Wichita, KS. Most of the school’s 165 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges. Tuition fees are around $11,464 per year. Learning materials may cost in the order of $2,125, although this will vary with the program.

Wichita Area Technical College

4004 N Webb Rd. Bldg 100, Wichita, Kansas 67226
(316) 677-9400
Automotive Technology – Certificate Program, Automotive Technology – Associate Program

Wichita Area Technical College offers multiple training options, including a Certificate program, an Associate program and a Certificate program. All programs are taught at their campus in Wichita in Sedgwick County, KS. The majority of of the school’s 3,318 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Additionally, the college has NATEF program accreditation. Fees for tuition for in-state students are likely to be in the order of $7,323 and for students from outside the state likely to be about $8,735 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $1,852, although this varies from program to program.

* Tuition fees and accredition status are correct at the time of writing, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (http://nces.ed.gov/). Confirm with college before applying.

Neighbor States

Residents of Kansas may also wish to review their options in Nebraska, Missouri, Oklahoma and Colorado.

NATEF Accredited Secondary School Programs

Below is a list of NATEF accredited high school programs, offering training in automotive technology, autobody and collision repair and diesel mechanic programs in the state of Kansas. Please note that accreditation status is correct at the time of writing and may have since changed. Please check with the school and with NATEF before making any commitment.

Arkansas CityBeloitColumbusHaysHutchinsonKansas CityOlatheSalinaTopekaWichita

City: Arkansas City

Cowley County Community College

209 S. 4th, Arkansas City, KS 67005
(316) 777-4314

Automotive Program

Contact: Tim Walton
Tel: (316) 777-4314
Programs: Automatic Transmission & Transaxle, Brakes, Electrical/Electronic Systems, Engine Performance, Engine Repair, Heating and Air Conditioning, Manual Drive Train & Axles, Suspension & Steering

City: Beloit

North Central Kansas Technical College

3033 US 24 Hwy., Beloit, KS 67420
(785) 738-9011

Automotive Program

Contact: Robert Gibbens
Tel: (785) 738-9011
Programs: Master Automobile Service Technology

City: Columbus

Coffeyville Community College – Columbus Technical Campus

509 West Elm, Columbus, KS 66725
(620) 429-3283

Automotive Program

Contact: Jeff Phillips
Tel: (620) 429-3283
Programs: Brakes, Electrical/Electronic Systems, Engine Performance, Engine Repair, Heating and Air Conditioning, Suspension & Steering

Auto Body/Collision Program

Contact: Hal Daniels
Tel: (620) 429-3896
Programs: Damage Analysis/Estimating/Customer Serv, Non-Structural Analysis/Damage Repair, Painting and Refinishing, Structural Analysis and Damage Repair

City: Hays

North Central Kansas Technical College

2205 Wheatland, Hays, KS 67901
(785) 623-6172

Automotive Program

Contact: Mark Rathbun
Tel: (785) 623-6172
Programs: Master Automobile Service Technology

City: Hutchinson

Hutchinson Career & Technical Education Academy

800 15th Circle, Hutchinson, KS 67501
(620) 615-4215

Automotive Program

Contact: Kevin Berrey
Tel: (620) 615-4215
Programs: Master Automobile Service Technology

City: Kansas City

Kansas City Kansas Community College

6736 State Ave, Kansas City, KS 66112
(913) 288-7701

Automotive Program

Contact: John Hattok
Tel: (913) 288-7701
Programs: Automatic Transmission & Transaxle, Brakes, Electrical/Electronic Systems, Engine Performance, Engine Repair, Heating and Air Conditioning, Manual Drive Train & Axles, Suspension & Steering

Auto Body/Collision Program

Contact: Richard Gravelle
Tel: (913) 288-7720
Programs: Damage Analysis/Estimating/Customer Serv, Mechanical and Electrical, Non-Structural Analysis/Damage Repair, Painting and Refinishing, Structural Analysis and Damage Repair

City: Olathe

Olathe Advanced Technical Center

611 N Nelson Rd., Olathe, KS 66061
(816) 550-9750

Automotive Program: AYES

Contact: Ken Gandy
Tel: (913) 780-7026
Programs: Automobile Service Technology

Auto Body/Collision Program

Contact: Paul Katsulis
Tel: (816) 550-9750
Programs: Language/Arts, Mathematics, Painting and Refinishing, Science

City: Salina

Salina Area Technical College

2562 Centennial Rd., Salina, KS 67401
(785) 309-3166

Automotive Program

Contact: Tom Conway
Tel: (785) 309-3166
Programs: Master Automobile Service Technology

City: Topeka

Washburn Institute of Technology

5724 SW Huntoon St, Topeka, KS 66604
(785) 228-6439

Automotive Program

Contact: Robert Oswald
Tel: (785) 228-6439
Programs: Master Automobile Service Technology

City: Wichita

Wichita Area Technical College – Grove Campus

301 South Grove, Wichita, KS 67211
(316) 677-1645

Auto Body/Collision Program

Contact: Patrice McAvoy
Tel: (316) 677-1645
Programs: Damage Analysis/Estimating/Customer Serv, Mechanical and Electrical, Non-Structural Analysis/Damage Repair, Painting and Refinishing, Structural Analysis and Damage Repair

Wichita High School North

1437 N Rochester St., Wichita, KS 67203
(316) 973-6162

Automotive Program: AYES

Contact: Robert Allen
Tel: (316) 973-6162
Programs: Maintenance and Light Repair