Southwest University at El Paso

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Diesel Technology  

The Diesel Technology program offered at Southwest University at El Paso is designed to give students the necessary technical knowledge, hands-on training, and skills development to become highly qualified diesel mechanics by immersing them in a job-simulated training environment, maintaining, servicing, and repairing the diesel engines and equipment systems that power the nation’s trucks, buses, locomotives, and heavy-duty machinery. 

In the classroom, students develop skills in reading, written communication, computation, and critical thinking. Through in-depth lectures, classroom participation, and class assignments, students gain a basic understanding of diesel engine theory, including diesel engine construction, diesel engine sub-systems, and the principles of operation of the entire diesel engine system. Areas of study include gear ratios, cubic inch displacement, electrical circuitry, alignment angles, U.S. standard and metric measuring systems, shop management, service record-keeping, customer service protocol, and more.

In the state-of-the-art hands-on training facility, students acquire valuable job-specific experience, as they learn how to properly diagnose, repair, and maintain heavy duty diesel trucks and diesel-powered equipment. Students develop analytical, technical, and mechanical skills as they are carefully guided by their instructors, training in all areas of the diesel engine system, including diesel engines, diesel electrical systems, electronic systems, power trains, fuel systems, hydraulic systems, steering and suspension systems, and mobile climate control systems. Preventative maintenance and inspection procedures are also taught.

By disassembling, inspecting, diagnosing, repairing, and reassembling various diesel engines and their intricate system components using advanced diagnostic equipment, service manuals, wiring diagrams, test meters, lab scopes, power tools, machine tools, and hand tools, students gain a crucial understanding of diesel engine and heavy equipment service and repair procedures, performing diesel engine rebuilds and tune-ups with their own hands.

Working both independently, and in teams, students learn the importance of interpersonal communication and effective time management, completing each assignment given to them by their instructors with accuracy and proficiency. Quality workmanship, safety, and shop courtesy are all stressed throughout the Diesel Technology program at Southwest University at El Paso.

What to Expect After College

Students who successfully complete the Diesel Technology program at Southwest University at El Paso will possess all the basic knowledge, skills, and training needed to secure an entry-level position as a qualified diesel mechanic working in dealerships, fleet shops, and independent repair shops.

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 Texas was $43,720 yearly and $21.02 hourly, just 3% lower than the national average.

The Two-Year Associate of Applied Science Degree

Southwest University at El Paso offers a two-year Associate of Applied Science Degree in Diesel Technology. This program is Pell Grant eligible. 

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