BridgeValley Community & Technical College

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Diesel Technology  

The Diesel Technology program offered at BridgeValley Community & Technical College is designed to provide students with a comprehensive knowledge of diesel theory and a rigorous hands-on experience of practical skills training, preparing them for entry-level positions as diesel mechanics qualified to service, maintain, and repair both on-highway and off-highway vehicles and equipment.

The Diesel Technology program focuses on the diesel engines and system components found in today’s medium and heavy duty diesel trucks and heavy equipment.  

In the classroom, students receive lectures on diesel engine theory, learning about the operation of the diesel engine system and diesel valve train operation, as well as the fundamentals of electricity as it pertains to the diesel engine, including electrical production, storage, and usage. 

Through lively discussions, in-depth study materials, and class assignments, students develop important thinking and reasoning skills and effective communication skills. Proper procedures and protocol for effectively managing a diesel maintenance and repair shop will also be discussed.

In the state-of-the-art diesel facility, students acquire the hands-on training needed to properly inspect, diagnose, and repair diesel engines, automatic transmissions, manual transmissions, air brakes, hydraulic brakes, chassis electrical systems, suspension systems, steering systems, hydraulic systems, and mobile air conditioning systems.

Students will also gain hands-on experience in basic welding processes, system preventive maintenance and computer applications for technicians. Industrial safety and the proper procedures for handling and disposing of hazardous materials according to OSHA regulations will also be discussed and practiced.

Students will learn multi-cylinder engine overhaul by disassembling, inspecting, diagnosing, repairing, and reassembling various multi-cylinder diesel engines and their integrated equipment systems, using computerized diagnostic machines, gauges, electronic multi-meters, service manuals, wiring schematics, hand tools and power tools that include wrenches, screwdrivers, pliers, and impact wrenches.

Students will develop effective time management skills, and learn the value of teamwork and leadership, as they work together to successfully complete every task assigned to them by their instructors with accuracy and precision. Ethics, integrity, and professional courtesy will also be discussed and practiced throughout the length of the program.

The Diesel Technology Curriculum

The Diesel Technology program is made up of the following career-focused courses:

  • Diesel Engine Theory & Operation
  • Diesel Engine Valvetrain & Operation
  • Fundamentals of Electricity
  • Electrical Production, Storage & Usage
  • Chassis Electrical Systems
  • First Year Experience
  • Introduction to Welding Processes
  • Diesel Engine Inspection & Reassembly
  • Diesel Engine Accessories
  • Suspension & Steering
  • Introduction to Computer Applications for Technicians
  • Industrial Safety / OSHA 30
  • Manual Transmissions
  • Automatic Transmissions
  • Differentials of Drive Axles
  • Air Brakes
  • Hydraulic Brakes
  • Hydraulics
  • System Preventative Maintenance
  • Mobile Air Conditioning Systems
  • Advanced Electronic Engine Controls
  • Internship
  • Senior Seminar

Students are also required to take Applied Math for Technicians, English Composition I, Business and Professional Writing, Physical Science, Physical Science Lab, IPR: Interviewing Strategies, and one Technical Elective in order to fulfill the graduation requirements of the Associate in Applied Science Degree program. Students amust finish each course and maintain at least a 2.0 GPA, the equivalent of a “C” grade, in order to graduate.

Occupational Outlook

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 West Virginia was $36,640 yearly and $17.61 hourly, 19% lower than the national average.

Graduates of the Diesel Technology program at BridgeValley Community & Technical College can be confident that they possess the comprehensive education and specialized training needed to secure an entry-level position as a qualified diesel mechanic in the medium and heavy-duty truck and heavy equipment service and repair industry. Occupational opportunities include, but are not limited to, the truck transportation industry, automotive repair and maintenance facilities, the construction industry, the manufacturing industry, automotive leasing, and retail and wholesale trade.

The Associate in Applied Science Degree and Undergraduate Certificate

BridgeValley Community & Technical College offers a two-year Associate in Applied Science Degree in Diesel Technology. BridgeValley Community & Technical College also offers a 13-week Diesel Technology Undergraduate Certificate. The two-year Associate in Applied Science Degree program is Pell Grant eligible. 

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