Ferris State University

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Heavy Equipment Technology

The Heavy Equipment Technology program at Ferris State University educates and trains students on how to use technical manuals, reference charts, diagnostic equipment, and specialized tools to diagnose, test, and repair equipment malfunctions.

Each student will learn how to properly and effectively identify technical, mechanical, and electrical problems by observing, measuring, and analyzing data and using their problem-solving skills to take a course of action and fix the problem. Students gain valuable hands-on experience working both independently and in teams as they repair, replace, and adjust various diesel components and perform important preventive maintenance tasks.

Students will also develop important occupational skills and specialized knowledge as they learn how to disassemble, inspect, troubleshoot, repair, and reassemble all types of heavy-duty equipment and system components.


The Heavy Equipment Technology Curriculum

The Heavy Equipment Technology program at Ferris State University is designed around a very job-oriented curriculum that includes the following classes:

  • Trouble Shooting Strategies
  • Maintenance Fundamentals
  • Electronics Fundamentals
  • Engine Technology
  • Fluid Power Fundamentals
  • Planned Maintenance Systems
  • Transport Refrigeration System
  • Electrical Systems
  • Diesel Fuel Systems Technology
  • Brakes & Suspension Systems
  • Power Transfer Technology
  • Auto Transmissions
  • Introduction to Welding
  • Industry Internship

Students are also required to take English I, Industrial and Career Writing, Intermediate Algebra, Concepts in Physics, and a Cultural Enrichment Elective as well as a Social Awareness Elective to meet the minimum 64 credit hour Associate of Applied Science Degree requirements and must maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA in order to graduate. Students also have the option of acquiring a four-year (127 credit hours) Bachelor of Science degree in Heavy Equipment Service Engineering Technology, the only BS degree of its kind in the nation.

From Graduation to Occupation

To date, it is estimated that less than half of the current demand for qualified diesel technicians is being met in the fast growing heavy equipment industry. Graduates of the Heavy Equipment Technology program at Ferris State University will be equipped with the skills, knowledge, and training to secure employment as an entry-level heavy equipment technician to help fulfill the growing demand for qualified diesel mechanics. Employers opportunities include fleet maintenance and repair, agriculture equipment service and repair, construction equipment repair, heavy-duty truck repair, as well as power plant maintenance and repair, marine diesel engine repair, and heavy equipment manufacturing.

As the diesel industry continues to grow rapidly, job opportunities for qualified diesel mechanics is expected to increase 11% by the year 2020, as fast as average, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The mean annual wage for bus and truck mechanics and diesel engine specialists working in the United States in 2014 was $45,160, while the mean salary for bus and truck mechanics and diesel engine specialists employed in the state of Michigan was $43,150 yearly and $20.75 hourly, just 4% lower than the national average.

The Bachelor of Applied Science Degree and Associate of Applied Science Degree

Ferris State University offers a four-year Bachelor of Applied Science Degree in Automotive Technology with an emphasis in Heavy Equipment Service Engineering Technology (HSET). Ferris State University offers a two-year Associate of Applied Science Degree in Heavy Equipment Technology. Both programs are Pell Grant eligible. 

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