Mid-State Technical College

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Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technician*  

The curriculum of the Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technician program at Mid-State Technical College focuses on the service and repair of heavy duty trucks, equipment, and machinery, training students to become successful heavy duty diesel mechanics. Students receive a mixture of classroom instruction and job-simulated hands-on training.

Students are able to obtain real-world job experience inside a state-of-the-art training facility, repairing and maintaining Mid-State Technical College’s fleet of diesel trucks and heavy equipment. The Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technician course curriculum follows the standards set forth by the National Automotive Training Education Foundation (NATEF).

Students are taught such topics as diesel theory and the fundamentals of the diesel engine in the classroom, learning about the design, functions, and principles of operation of the entire diesel engine system. Through in-depth lectures, class discussions, detailed study materials, and assigned projects, students will strengthen their comprehension of English and Mathematics, while developing strong communication, analytical, and problem solving skills. Service practices in the transportation industry as well as engine performance and the use of alternative fuels in today’s rapidly changing diesel industry will also be discussed.

Inside the state-of-the-art training facility is where students obtain valuable hands-on training, as they learn how to inspect, diagnose, and repair diesel engines, braking systems, electrical systems, diesel electronic systems, fuel systems, diesel hybrid systems, emissions control systems, transmissions, drive trains, hydraulic systems, steering and suspensions systems, and heating and air conditioning systems. Students will also gain hands-on experience with machine tools as they learn about metal fabrication and machining. Proper procedures for preventive maintenance will also be discussed and practiced.

Students will learn on the most up-to-date computerized diagnostic equipment as they diagnose and repair the computerized auxiliary systems found on today’s diesel engines. Service manuals, circuit diagrams, precision measuring instruments, electronic multi-meters, lathes, pneumatic wrenches, screwdrivers, pliers, wrenches, and other hand tools will also be used throughout the program as students learn how to repair and rebuild diesel engines and their intricate system components by disassembling, inspecting, testing, repairing, and reassembling various diesel engines.

Students will learn the value of teamwork and time management as they work both independently, and in groups to successfully complete every task assigned to them by their instructors in an efficient and timely manner. Shop safety, professionalism, and workplace ethics will also be stressed.

The Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technician Course Outline

The Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technician program contains the following industry-relevant courses:

  • Metal Fabrication
  • Intro to Electronics
  • Service Practices in Transportation Industry
  • Braking Systems-Diesel
  • Suspension & Steering Systems
  • Heating/AC-Diesel
  • Preventive Maintenance-Diesel
  • Drive Trains
  • Electrical Systems
  • Hybrid Systems-Diesel
  • Metals & Machining
  • Engine Repair
  • Fuel Systems & Alternative Fuels
  • Mobile Hydraulics Repair
  • Engine Performance & Emissions-Diesel
  • Advanced Electricity-Diesel

Students must also take College Mathematics, Applied Science, and either Employment Strategies or Career Development in order to meet the 66 credit requirements of the Technical Diploma program. In order to graduate, students are required to complete every class and maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA, the equivalent of a “C” grade.

From Education to Occupation 

Graduates of the Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technician program at Mid-State Technical College will be equipped with the knowledge training needed to gain entry-level employment in the transportation industry as qualified diesel mechanics, agricultural machinery technicians, heavy equipment technicians, locomotive technicians, over-the-road truck technicians, portable power technicians, reefer technicians, and trailer technicians, working for commercial trucking fleets, bus lines, construction companies, logging companies, mining companies, oceanic shipping companies, railroads, oil and natural gas exploration and extraction companies, on farms and ranches, and at agriculture equipment dealerships, RV dealerships, and independent service garages. 

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 Wisconsin was $42,710 yearly and $20.54 hourly, just 5% lower than the national average.

The Two-Year Technical Diploma

Mid-State Technical College offers a two-year Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technician Technical Diploma. This program is Pell Grant eligible. 

*Program is certified by the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF).

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