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Schooling and jobs

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by bigboy, Dec 1, 2005.

  1. bigboy

    bigboy Registered Member

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    Ok guys I am 17 years old and just got my GED papers yesterday saying that I passed with very high scores so now what. I really want to go to school and eventually get a good job in the automotive field and maybe auto-diesel but I dont know what kinda pay to expect from this kinda job and also what schools I should apply at? I was thinking about Wyo tech in Laramie, Wyoming or maybe UTI in AZ but not sure what schools are better. Also here in Indiana about 45miles away we have Lincon tech but everyone says that school sucks. What do you guys think? I am wanting to go to school right after summer that way I kinda have a head start because I will have just turned 18 in march and hopfully graduate from a two year school by the time I am 21 and well start making money after that. I have also thought about going to school to me an engineer but not sure if that is something I want to do because I really like working with cars, trucks, motorcycles ect... ya know.
    Thanks
     
  2. guido666

    guido666 1/2 ton status

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    Get a 4 year degree. It's worth far more then just twice as much as a 2 year.

    I have a couple buddies that got Associates Degrees, one in computer networking (or similar) from ITT Tech, and one as ASE Car Mechanic from some other school. They often loose jobs to people with 4 year degrees.

    4 year degrees will also get you paid a good bit more. I'm graduating in 3 weeks with degrees in computer science and math, and the jobs I'm interviewing for start at 55k-60k/yr. Plus to make the super-bucks, you will eventually need a Masters degree, and you need a Bachelors (4 year) to even start.

    Tech schools just don't seem to get much respect from most job fields. I think they consider it a half-assed sort of degree.

    Hope I didn't offend anyone with these comments, just my personal experience with the whole deal. Feel free to debate.
     
  3. rdn2blazer

    rdn2blazer 1 ton status Premium Member

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    you cant go wrong with Wyotech or UTI, they are both well respected automotive tech schools. an engineering degree will yield you very good pay but only after atleast 4 years of intense schooling and training. i know a guy who spent 4 to 6 yrs of schooling for mechanical engineering after high school. got his degree for it, then his first REAL job started at $20.00 hr. i dont know if thats a rare situation or the average or what for an entry level engineer gets to start though. it probably varies alot depending on what type of degree, geographical location among other things. if you like workings with your hands go with you like. either automotive related or something.

    to many young people have spent years in college going for a degree only to find that the job that they got the degree in the first place for wasn't what it was cracked up to be. i will take a career or great job that i really love or enjoy as long as it paid decent over a high paying miserabal job any day.

    I went to Machinist trade school as i also like to work with my hands. I have been in this trade for close to 15 years now. I LOVE BEING A SKILLED MACHINIST. i can make most anything I want to. I have 12 yrs cnc experience in cnc mills and lathes and multi-axis machining centers and live tooling lathes, and mill/lathe combo machining in one machine. I have made everything from kids toys to rocket engine parts and satalite parts that have went into space. I have machined many F-16, F-18, and many other millitary parts for our countries defense.

    the machine shop I have been at for about 4 years now, we machine on many millitary parts including Black Hawk, Apachie, and other millitary helicopters parts, and fighter plane parts, commercial plane parts. machining is, and has been a great career. I became the lead of the shop im at about a year and a half ago. this shop is a conventional shop, meaning there are no cnc machines. we are a high tech coating shop, we do parts for MANY industries and millitary, in the machine shop we do small production quantities.

    i make more money then i have ever made at any shop and i dont have to bang out hundreds of parts on cnc machining centers anymore. im above $25. an hr. we do close tollerence work, just did a job that was three parts, each part had two bores that had a plus/ minus tollerence of .0002 ten thousands on an inch. the bores had to be concentric to a datum bore with in .0005 and the span from center line of one bore to the next bore was plus/minus .0005. all three finished good. that was a very challenging job to say the least. i have rambeled long enough, pm me if you have any q's about machining, and good luck with a career decision.
     
  4. guido666

    guido666 1/2 ton status

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    I do agree that you need to make sure what kind of work you like to do before going to school. That being said, you can never have too much education. I too worked as a machinist for a while, just because I liked it. I never liked the fact that I had no input in WHAT I was machining, so I knew college was for me.

    $20/hr amounts to around $40,000/yr. Engineers these days start about where us geeks do, $50-70k, but white collar jobs are usually salaried so you will see figures in yearly income instead of hourly. As a gauge, $55,000/year is about $28/hr! And that is starting, after about 5 years you go up about $15-20k. My father is a process engineer with like 20 years and makes $115k.

    Now that being said, like was mentioned before, money is great, but doesn't make you happy. But if you can find something you like to do with an engineering degree ( and there is all kinds of cool stuff from designing suspensions for race cars to designing hard drive circuitry for computers) money sure helps sweeten the deal. :D
     
  5. cbbr

    cbbr 1 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    That sums it up. Decide what you want to do and then get all the eduction you can. Its an investment that you will have forever. Do it now, if you wait, it will only get harder.
     
  6. bigjbear

    bigjbear 1 ton status Staff Member Moderator

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    $55k/yr is more like $26/hr with no O/T. Most of those entry level salaried jobs require a lot of unpaid O/T. As mechs & inspectors we made a little more than most field engineers, but worked fewer hours. The guys in the towers made more than us, though. And $36/hr is around $75k/yr, that's about the high end for no 4 yr degree, if you don't do O/T. I know a few guys who make more doing mech work w/o O/T, but not many.
     
  7. bigboy

    bigboy Registered Member

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    What does an entry level mechanice make an hr or yearly?? I do not know what I like to do as far as jobs. I have only worked construction and fast food I hate working both of them altho consturction makes a good paycheck for a 17 year old I make about $550 a week but only 8 months out of the year. Stuff I like doing is working on my truck and stuff like that ya know but I am not very skilled at doing it which I would like to become skilled and be able to do more and also I want to eventually open my own shop doing everything from basic repairs to building engines and customizing cars and trucks. But from what I have heard mechanics do not get paid crap ya know I want to be able to support a family have a nice house and be able to afford nice stuff and also have money to spend on building up my truck ect.. not just always having a project truck that takes two or three years or more to complete because of money issues.
     
  8. fireplug

    fireplug 1/2 ton status

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    I can't agree with this enough!

    And go to school now while you still can. Going back later in life is tough as hell, financially, and mentally. And get as good a degree as your abilities will allow.

    A higher level of education will mean better top end. By that I mean that while it may not pay off immediately, eventually you will be making more money. It also makes you more of a commodity which in today's ever changing job market is priceless. Being able to survive cutbacks, downsizing, plant closures, restructuring, blah, blah, blah, is SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST!

    Also, you are young now, but trust me young grasshopper you won't be forever, and as you slow down, or your back starts acting up, or the knee replacement is in the cards, a job with a little cushion is a god send.
     
  9. guido666

    guido666 1/2 ton status

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    Then you want a 4 year degree. Unless you're gung-ho for some particular job that you know doesn't need it, you can't go wrong with more education.

    You can always learn to wrench on your own time, but try learning differential calculus by yourself. :wink1:

    4 year degrees will get you a paycheck that no jobs requiring less education can touch. (With maybe a few exceptions but those are usually highly specialized positions.) It also gives you more headroom. The most you make without a degree and years of experience is where you start when you have one. And being salary is nice.

    Now don't get me wrong, I have no hard feelings toward blue collar jobs or workers, but I like to try to see everyone aspire to be their best. Foregoing education is limiting yourself.
     
  10. mini_mull

    mini_mull 1/2 ton status

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    You have nine months to decide, so make the most of it. If there's anything you think you might want to do, go to a place where people are doing it. Then either get a job there if you can, or just ask to be able to assist or observe a couple hours a day. You'll be able to talk to the people doing the job you're considering to see how they like it, how much they get paid, and what school you should attend. Actually being there while the work is being done will give you the next best insite to actually doing it. Try as many different things as possible, maybe one a month. Make sure you check out a few different fields and different level jobs within each field. When assisting or observing make sure to buddy up to the people who have graduated and started the job most recently, they will have the info you need about which schools are the best for the money, and some tricks for how to get by on almost no cash while going to school or where to get the best loans. Old timers have the most experience, but many of them may have taken a road to get there that is no longer available. Good luck.
     
  11. RustBuket

    RustBuket 1/2 ton status

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    All I can say is, if you're going into Eng then be prepared to work your butt off! I'm in second year mechanical engineering right now and its intense! I have so much work to do. Now finals are coming up real quick and I'm startin to get worried.
     
  12. cbbr

    cbbr 1 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    I agree. More education will not keep you from working with your hands if that is what you decide to do, but try getting a management job without the degree. More education = more options. I have several friends who work "blue collar" jobs because they love them. They also have 4 year degrees.
     
  13. Robert D

    Robert D 1/2 ton status

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    I too am an Engineering student at the University of Texas, Austin (Hook Em'). My area of study is Electrical Engineering, which I will be receiving a degree in next December (about time). From my experience, I have learned that the possibilities from an Engineering degree are endless. With my EE degree I could go into a large variety of fields (weapons, medical, computers, power production & delivery, construction, etc.). The degree also opens up the possibility of returning to school later in life for an MBA or Law degree. Good luck either way you choose. The 4-year Engineering degree would be no piece of cake, and does focus on applications of mathematics which allows for less BSing your way through with essay tests.
     
  14. RustBuket

    RustBuket 1/2 ton status

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    I agree with the options are endless with and BE degree. Lots of companies will hire you just because you have an BE degree cause they knows you're probably not an idiot, even if its not necessarily an eng related job.
     
  15. 1-ton

    1-ton 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    There is a lot of good advice being given here. I will tell you what I went through in my life. I went to UTI Auto Tech in Arizona back in 1979. It is considered the best Automotive Tech School in the Southwest. I got a job easily after graduating. I spent fifteen years in the automotive repair field, and then got sick of getting greasy dirty, working in the cold and heat, getting banged up, bleeding, and having to spend $50,000 on tools. I went back to College, and got a degree. I now work indoors where it is never too hot or cold. I do not get greasy. I do not have to lift anything heavy. I do not have torn up hands, and I only have to spend a few hundred dollars on the some of the equipment I need, but I still make only a little more than I did as an auto mechanic.
     
  16. bigboy

    bigboy Registered Member

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    Thanks for all the advice guys I really appriceate it because I really have no clue on what I want to do yet and well I want to get started asap on schooling because that way I can get out of these BS jobs of construction also I am going to try like minimull said on observing different jobs that way I can get a feel of what it is like to do the job and also see what kinda schooling is needed/wanted by the employers.
     
  17. bigjbear

    bigjbear 1 ton status Staff Member Moderator

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    Entry level aircraft mech don't get paid squat w/o an A&P licence. That means 18 mo of school minimum, 2 yrs at most places. I enjoy the work but it is definitely not for everyone.

    If you are thinking about college I would at least start, like many thing starting can be the hardest part. Someone talked about it being harder to go back later, very true. Once you start adding wife, kids, house, bills, etc it can be overwhelming.

    My point earlier was, you need to have some sort of marketable skill. You might want to read engineers thread in the lounge.
     
  18. tlspeed

    tlspeed Registered Member

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    Try checking in to a school with an engineering technology or industrial technology program. That is what i am in right now, I on my second year, and love it. An Engineering Tech degree is a Bachelors degree, which means atleast 4 years of school (is offered in some tech schools as 2 year program but not as good). Engineering Tech is less math intensive than a traditional Engineering program such as mechanical or civil. The good part of the program is it is more hands on. After genrrals are taken care of, some classes that i am taking are intro to fluid power, Materials an Manufacturing class, Welding and Casting, Milling and Machining, Plastics processes. This is a very good program, with the right school of course. The job opportunites are high for this field and the pay is decent. Some of the graduates in this program are starting any wheres from 40,000 to 60,000.
     
  19. tx_sub

    tx_sub 1/2 ton status

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    i got a bs in mechanical engineering and am now working for peterbilt. its automotive/diesel. school was hard, but worth it in terms of fun and learning. the only down side is student loans until i'm 33, but that's what i get for going to a private institution.
     
  20. cok5

    cok5 Registered Member

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    Well I can tell you a few things....do it and do it now, WHATEVER IT IS!! I will be 27 in 28 days and still jacking around. I now have wife, kids, house payment, car payments and the 2 year project that you are talking about. I too like to work with my hands but I was always told this...."Once you make your hobby your job it is no longer your hobby." I fill like I have waited to late now and will be too old when I get out of school to compete with the youngins's like yourself.....words of inspiration would be great right now :bow:

    Good luck with what you decide, just go and do it.
     

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