Becoming an Auto Mechanic or Automotive Technician in Vermont
There are ample opportunities in Vermont for individuals looking to start a career as an automotive technician or mechanic, including automotive body repairers, auto glass installers and repairers, and heavy vehicle mechanics such as bus and truck mechanics and diesel engine specialists. [En Español]
A formal education is not a required part of becoming a successful auto mechanic, but a degree or certificate does enable someone to advance in their career. There are Automotive Youth Educational Systems (AYES) programs available in Vermont for students to begin their training before graduating from high school. All types of automotive mechanics are encouraged to obtain Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certifications to further advance their careers and have higher earning potential.
According to the May 2017 report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there were 1,650 automotive service technicians and mechanics employed in Vermont. There were an additional 450 automotive body and related repairers and 780 heavy vehicle mechanics employed throughout the state. According to the BLS, employment of automotive technicians is projected to increase by 5.7 percent in Vermont by 2024.
Automotive technicians and mechanics in Vermont earned an average of $39,530 annually, or $19 per hour, according to 2017 BLS statistics. Entry-level positions for the job averaged an annual salary of $26,740, or $13 per hour. The average annual salary increased to $37,790, or $18 per hour, as experience grew. On the high end, automotive technicians and mechanics could earn as much as $56,720 per year, or $27 an hour.
In 2017, auto body and related repairers in Vermont earned an average of $44,040 a year, or $21 an hour. Entry-level positions in this specialty area averaged an annual salary of $30,000, or $14 an hour. With experience, the average salary increased to $40,850 a year. Highest paying positions for automotive body and related repairers paid $64,550 annually as of May 2017.
The average salary for an automotive glass installer and repairer was $41,080 a year as of May 2017, or $20 per hour. Salaries for entry-level positions averaged $27,960, while the most advanced positions earned $60,640 annually. After gaining on-the-job experience or certifications, auto glass installers and repairers typically earned as much as $37,910 a year.
Bus and truck mechanics and diesel specialists earned the highest paying salaries in Vermont in 2017. The average salaries for these positions were around $46,920 a year, or $23 an hour. Entry-level positions started at an average of $34,490 per year, or an hourly wage of $17. Employees who advanced in their field earned an average of $45,010 after gaining additional experience. Truck mechanics and diesel engine specialists could earn as much as $62,700 per year, or $30 an hour.
Salaries in Vermont by Occupation
|Occupation||Total Employed||Average Hourly Wage||Average Annual Salary||Lowest 10%||Highest 10%|
|Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics||1,890||$18.06||$37,560||$23,610||$53,620|
|Automotive Body and Related Repairers||580||$20.59||$42,830||$28,550||$60,380|
|Automotive Glass Installers and Repairers||130||$16.51||$34,340||$21,710||$53,110|
|Bus and Truck Mechanics and Diesel Engine Specialists||650||$21.58||$44,880||$31,820||$61,740|
Auto Mechanic Salaries in Vermont by Region
|Region||Total Employed||Mean Hourly Wage||Mean Annual Salary|
|Burlington-South Burlington, VT||660||$16.99||$35,330|
Popular Automotive Programs in Vermont
Although Vermont only offers one college program for automotive technicians, there are many AYES high school programs available. In Vermont, White River Junction, Essex Junction, Enosburg Falls and Bennington have career centers for local high schools with AYES programs. Bradford, Newport, Rutland, St. Albans and Vergennes have maintenance and light repair programs for students at their local career or technical centers.
It is important to note that the maintenance and light repair programs are not part of the AYES program and that there are differences between the types of programs. AYES programs have partners who work in car dealerships, metro associations and Automotive Trade Association Executives (ATAE), as well as manufacturers and fixed operation directors, who work with students and give them the opportunity to shadow, intern or begin their career with one of the partners.
Vermont Technical College is the only college in Vermont that offers a post-secondary automotive program. Located in Randolph, Vermont Technical College is National Automotive Technician Education Foundation (NATEF) accredited. Vermont Tech offers two associate programs, one in automotive technology and another in diesel power technology. The associate programs are expected to take about two years. Students also have the opportunity to earn a diesel technology certificate in one year, or in addition to their associate degree.
Obtaining an ASE certificate allows mechanics to advance in their careers by showing employers and customers that they are qualified and trained well to do their job. An automotive technician is eligible for an ASE certificate after completing two years of related work or earning a certificate or associates degree in automotive technology along with one year of on-the-job experience. An ASE exam is different depending on the type of certification, and every mechanic must retake the exam every five years to remain certified.
Where to Find Work in Vermont
The state of Vermont has over 2,000 automotive specialists employed throughout the state. There are opportunities available everywhere in Vermont for individuals seeking a job in the industry, whether it is at the entry level or a competitive, advanced position. For auto mechanics just beginning their careers, auto body and related repairers have the least competition in the field. There are plenty of opportunities available to mechanics looking to work with dealerships, parts stores, or independent repair shops and service stations.
124 Admin Drive, Randolph, Vermont 05061
Automotive Technology – Associate Program
The Associate’s program in Automotive Technology at Vermont Technical College is taught at their campus in Randolph in Orange County. Most of the school’s 1,559 students are on 4-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education. Furthermore, the college has NATEF program accreditation. Tuition fees for in-state students are in the order of $14,026 and for students from outside the state approximately $25,858 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $1,000, although this will depend on the 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.
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 Vermont. 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.
Hartford Area Career & Technology Center
1 Gifford Rd., White River Junction, VT 5001
Automotive Program: AYES
Contact: Shawn Cassidy
Tel: (802) 295-8630
Programs: Maintenance and Light Repair
Auto Body/Collision Program
Contact: Lee Hathorn
Tel: (802) 295-8620
Programs: Damage Analysis/Estimating/Customer Serv, Painting and Refinishing