Becoming an Automotive Technician or Mechanic in Alaska
A career in auto mechanics may be the perfect match for you if you’re logical, good with your hands, and detail-oriented. Depending on job availability, possible positions include automotive service technician, body and collision repairer, glass Repairer or diesel mechanic. With on-the-job or postsecondary training ,you could learn how to repair any part of most automobiles.
Requirements for becoming an Automotive Service Technician in Alaska
No mechanic license requirements apply for auto techs in Alaska. However, employers prefer hiring techs who are certified or have some training in the field. This may include a postsecondary certificate in automotive technology or an associate degree in automotive technology.
Auto mechanic training programs may cover some of the following topics:
- Engine performance
- Ignition systems
- Braking systems
- Tire maintenance and repair
- Transmission systems
- Computerized engine diagnostics
- Safety procedures
Auto Mechanic Schools in Alaska
If you want to pursue a career in auto repair after high school, consider one of the many programs offered in Alaska. Some only take a year or so to complete and grant a certificate, while others last two years and confer an Associate degree. Consider one of the following training programs if you are interested in an signing up for an automotive technology program.
- University of Alaska Anchorage. The University of Alaska in Anchorage offers a certificate program for undergraduate students that takes two years to complete. This program is focused on automotive technology and does not require general education hours. The Associate in Applied Science (AAS) degree program offered at the University of Alaska in Anchorage also takes two years to finish, however computer proficiency is necessary for students enrolled in this particular degree option and fewer credit hours are required overall as general education courses are not mandatory.
- University of Alaska Southeast. The University of Alaska Southeast in Juneau offers an automotive technology certificate program that teaches students the technical skills needed for entry-level auto mechanic jobs. The program can be completed in as little as one year.
- University of Alaska Fairbanks Community and Technical College. The UAF offers a certificate in automotive technology after completing classroom instruction as well as hands-on learning, so that students are prepared to work entry-level jobs as an automotive technician. This program is not only NATEF-accredited but it is approved by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) as well.
ASE certification is nationally recognized and desired within the automotive industry. To become certified, you must pass one ASE examination related to your area of expertise and renew your certification every five years through retesting or a recertification program. By successfully completing these requirements, you will be able prove to both current and future employers that you have attained expert-level skills in auto repair.
There are over 40 ASE certification exams available, some of which include:
- Truck equipment certification tests
- Auto maintenance and light repair certification test
- Engine machinist certification tests
- Light truck certification tests
- School bus certification tests
- Transit bus certification tests
- Alternate fuels certification test
- Parts specialist certification tests
- Damage analysis and estimating certification test
- Collision repair and refinish certification tests
Job Opportunities and Salary Expectations
Over the next decade, Alaska is anticipating a growth in employment for auto mechanics. According to The Bureau of Labor Statistics, there will be a 6% increase in this field from 2020-2030.
According to The Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of May 2021 automotive service technicians in Alaska earned an average salary of $60,020 per year. Bus and truck mechanics and diesel engine specialists earned a slightly higher salary at $60,270 per year while auto body and related repairers averaged $58,930 per year. Auto glass installers also brought in an annual salary of $37,920.
Auto Mechanic Salaries in Alaska by Region
|Mean Hourly Wage
|Mean Annual Salary
Working as an Auto Mechanic in Alaska
From Anchorage to Juneau and from Fairbanks to Ketchikan, you will find plenty of auto repair shops throughout Alaska. If you are looking for job opportunities in the automotive industry, consider applying at independent repair shops, car dealerships and other related businesses that require knowledgeable and experienced technicians. Many of these establishments also offer competitive pay and benefits.
In conclusion, if you’re looking to become an automotive technician in Alaska, you are entering a field that can be both challenging and rewarding.
- Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics, Occupational Employment and Wages, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes493023.htm
- Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/installation-maintenance-and-repair/automotive-service-technicians-and-mechanics.htm