Additional Resources

Career Path: You can usually get an entry-level job as a lube person, tire person, fuel person or utility person (mechanic’s trainee) with little or no experience. In these positions you would perform support services such as preventative maintenance. These positions are a good starting point in your new career to begin learning hands-on skills and tool usage. Many students in the Diesel Mechanics program also work as apprentices. Apprentice positions are assigned by union-affiliated employers, but we do the training. Upon completion of the Apprenticeship program, you will become a California-State certified journeyman. In non-union positions, mechanic trainees will also attain journeyman-level skills. Many opportunities beyond the journey-level exist as well, such as management or inspection.

Nature of the Work: Diesel Mechanics at the journey-level work independently diagnosing, troubleshooting and solving mechanical and electrical problems. The job requires professional judgment and communication skills. Diesel and Truck Mechanics is a hands-on career, so physical fitness is a crucial job qualification. Odd hours such as graveyard shifts are often required of those getting started in the field.

Work Environment: Diesel and Truck Mechanics work in a shop environment surrounded by equipment used on the job. The work can sometimes be dirty and physically demanding, while other aspects of the job require patience and precise hand-eye coordination. Diesel and Truck Mechanics must sometimes work outside in all kinds of weather. Because of the physical nature of this work, appropriate work clothing is required. This would include steel-toed boots and personal safety equipment as deemed necessary and appropriate for the job.

Specific Jobs Available to Graduates: Journeyman, Power Mechanic, Chassis mechanic, Field Service Technician, Power-Train Mechanic, Equipment Inspector, Service Writer, Foreman, Supervisor, Manager, Trainer, Welder/Fabricator, Air Conditioning/Refrigeration Technician, Marine Diesel.

Industries Employing Graduates of this Program: Cummins West, Inc., Peterson Tractor & Power Systems, Valley Industrial, Golden Gate Truck Center, Eaton Corporation, Bendix Air, etc.

Industry Pay Scales: Starting Pay $25,000-$30,000 per year; Journeyman $55,000-$63,000 per year; Advanced Positions $75,000-$100,000 per year.
BLS Occupational Outlook Handbook
Diesel Service Technicians and Mechanics