Johnston Community College

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Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology  

The coursework of the Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology program at Johnston Community College is designed to equip students with the knowledge and skills needed to service, diagnose, and repair medium and heavy-duty vehicles and equipment.

Students learn about the purpose, design, and principles of operation of today’s medium and heavy-duty trucks and diesel-powered equipment in the classroom and in the lab.

Through acute observation and hands-on training, each student will learn how to troubleshoot, maintain, and repair diesel engines, electronic engines, power trains, diesel electronic systems, diesel electrical systems, electronic fuel injection systems, mechanical transmissions, medium and heavy duty brake systems, air brakes, and transport climate control systems. PC skills for transportation, basic welding processes for diesel mechanics, proper preventive maintenance techniques, and medium/heavy-duty tune-ups are also taught.

Students develop both their mechanical and analytical skills through hands-on experience, disassembling, inspecting, diagnosing, repairing, and reassembling a variety of diesel engines and their integrated auxiliary systems, using computerized diagnostic machines, gauges, engine schematics, wiring diagrams, and hand tools. 

Effective oral and written communication skills are also stressed as students work independently and in teams to finish each task assigned to them by their instructors. Students learn the value of workplace ethics, a positive daily attitude, and occupational time management throughout the course of the program.

The Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology A.A.S. Degree

The Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology A.A.S. Degree program contains the following career-based classes:

  • Diesel Engines
  • Power Trains
  • Preventive Maintenance
  • Introduction to Transport Technology
  • Basic Transportation Electricity
  • Transportation Climate Control
  • Diesel Electronics System
  • Electronic Fuel Injection
  • Electronic Engines
  • Mechanical Transmissions
  • Medium/Heavy Duty Tune Up
  • Air Brakes
  • Medium/Heavy Duty Brake Systems
  • Suspension and Steering
  • Hydraulics-Medium and Heavy Duty
  • Basic Transportation Electrical Lab
  • Transportation Climate Control Lab
  • PC Skills for Transportation
  • Basic Welding Processes

Students are also required to take Introduction to Communication, Writing and Inquiry, Mathematical Measurement and Literacy, General Psychology, Basic PC Literacy, College Student Success, and Critical Thinking, in order to fulfill the 71 credit requirements of the Associate of Applied Science Degree program. To be eligible to graduate, students must complete each class and maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA, the equivalent of a “C” grade.

What to Expect After Graduating

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 North Carolina was $42,510 yearly and $20.44 hourly, just 5% lower than the national average.

Graduates of the Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology program at Johnston Community College will be well-prepared to take the ASE certification exams and seek entry-level employment as diesel mechanics in the diesel truck and heavy equipment repair industry. Occupational opportunities include working for commercial truck lines, bus lines, heavy construction companies, agricultural equipment dealerships, rail yards, and independent repair shops.

The Associate of Applied Science Degree, Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology Diploma, and Undergraduate Certificate

Johnston Community College offers a two-year Associate of Applied Science Degree in Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology as well as a one-year Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology Diploma. Johnston Community College also offers four different Undergraduate Certificate programs, each 4 months long, with concentrations in Electronics, Electrical, Engine, and Power Train. The two-year Associate of Applied Science Degree program and the one-year Diesel Technology Diploma program are both Pell Grant eligible. 

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