The 15 Best Auto Mechanic Schools

Auto_mechanic_schoolsAlthough auto mechanics are indeed a rare breed in today’s world of travel bloggers and university-goers, they are an indispensable part of every community. If you’re interested in pursuing this lucrative career path, you’ll find that your services sell for a more-than-reasonable price no matter where you live. Depending on the state, auto mechanics’ average starting salaries range anywhere from $31,600 to $45,000 per year.

The market for auto mechanics is steep, and if you want to take your interest in cars from a hobby to a lifelong profession, then you’re in the right place. With such a rapidly developing market and continuously evolving technologies, on-the-job training is no longer sufficient for auto mechanic trainees. That’s where our trade school rankings come in.

Those looking to start their path on the road to success can get a head start by attending a two-year vocational school and earning an official automotive degree. As far as self-promotion goes, this is the best thing you can do to put yourself ahead of other candidates on the job market. The schools listed on this ranking are all authorized to grant automotive degrees and teach prospective mechanics the art of diesel technology, engine performance, collision repair, and diagnostic training. Depending on what you strive to gain out of your educational experience, we have categorized the rankings into colleges–complete with descriptions of campus life and student experience–and schools, for whom we focus on occupational training quality. Whatever you are looking for, earning a degree is one of the best ways to guarantee yourself an excellent position in this field, and Trade School Careers can show you exactly where to start.

Ranking Methodology


TradeSchoolCareer rankings combine four key data points to score auto mechanic programs.

  • Affordability (tuition)
  • Student Success (graduation rate)
  • Student Satisfaction (retention rate)
  • Student Priority (student-to-faculty ratio)

The highest score that a school can receive is 100. If there is a tie in scoring, then the school or program with the lower of tuitions wins the higher ranking.

We believe that the four categories covered in this ranking are a good indication of a school’s ability to provide quality education at an affordable cost.

Without further adieu, here are this year’s best automotive colleges and trade schools.

Best Auto Mechanic CollegesBest Auto Mechanic Schools

15 Best Automotive Mechanic Colleges 2020


1. Northwest Iowa Community College

Score: 100

Tuition: $6,120
Graduation Rate: 65%
Retention Rate: 69%
Student-Faculty: 12:1

Northwest Iowa Community College is a top-of-the-line, community-oriented organization committed to providing quality education for every individual. The school offers a wide variety of two-year programs, but its transportation department provides some of the most comprehensive career training options in the nation. It specializes in the professional training of prospective auto mechanics.

Within the transportation department, the automotive & light-duty diesel technology program provides students with essential diagnostic and shop management skills, and the diesel technology program focuses on the maintenance and repair of semi-truck/trailers, construction, and agricultural equipment systems. NCC also runs the only heavy equipment operation and maintenance program in Iowa, mentoring students in tractor and motor grater repairs, along with a variety of other skills in safe loading and transportation procedures. These rare skills are invaluable in today’s fast-moving world, and Northwest Iowa Community College is one of the best places to acquire them.

2. Southern Adventist University

Score: 96.3

Tuition: $21,950
Graduation Rate: 52%
Retention Rate: 76%
Student-Faculty: 13:1

Southern Adventist University has functioned as a Seventh-day Adventist institution for post-secondary education and professional training since 1892. The school fosters Christian values within its students, alongside both academic and professional work ethic. Students who train under SAU’s career programs become highly sought-after in their particular spheres of industry after graduating with both their bachelor’s and associate’s degrees.

SAU’s industrial technologies branch opens the doors of opportunity to prospective mechanics and auto service industrialists, providing a comprehensive liberal arts education alongside mechanical training and real-world experience. Students have the option of earning both their associate’s and their bachelor’s of technology in auto service management. A certificate of auto service technology is also available to these students, who may minor in auto service technology if they so choose. After passing the Auto Service Exam (ASE), Southern Adventist graduates go on to pursue successful careers in the auto mechanic industry.

3. Walla Walla University

Score: 96

Tuition: $28,035
Graduation Rate: 57%
Retention Rate: 85%
Student-Faculty: 14:1

Walla Walla University is located in College Place, Washington, and has operated in affiliation with the Seventh-day Adventist church since its founding in 1892. Today, the school offers a variety of programs, but its Automotive area of study is one of the most notable.

In terms of applicability, this program is the best for prospective auto mechanics. The curriculum helps to develop students’ real-world experience by allowing them to operate a variety of state-of-the-art tools, such as the Mustang AWD-IMP dynamometer and tire alignment equipment. Students can work toward their associate of science in automotive technology bachelor of science degrees in automotive technology or management while operating an actual on-campus, student-run auto shop. Ultimately, the skills students gain through WWU’s hands-on approach will put them ahead of competitors in the job market as they pursue successful careers in this field.

4. SUNY College of Technology at Delhi

Score: 93.3

Tuition: $8,360
Graduation Rate: 44%
Retention Rate: 79%
Student-Faculty: 15:1

The SUNY College of Technology at Delhi has operated as one of the top-ranking institutions for post-secondary education in New York state since its founding in 1913. The school promotes academic excellence and professionalism among its student body, helping them to climb to higher levels of success.

Often, students who are interested in pursuing their passion for cars go into SUNY’s automotive technology and mechanics programs to earn their associate’s degrees. The automotive mechanics (AOS) equips students with skills in automotive repairs, diagnostics, and troubleshooting. The automotive technology (AAS) curriculum enables students to gain real-world experience as they deal with mechanical repairs and diagnostics using industry-standard equipment. This program also contributes to students’ four-year liberal arts degrees. All in all, the SUNY College of Technology at Delhi offers a first-rate educational and vocational experience to all its students, carving out clear paths to success in the field of automotive technology.

5. Arkansas State University

Score: 93

Tuition: $2,760
Graduation Rate: 20%
Retention Rate: 76%
Student-Faculty: 15:1

Arkansas State University is rooted in its home state’s agricultural history, dedicated to the instruction of horticulture, farming, and textile manufacturing since its 1909 founding. The easiest way for students to pursue vocational experience at this school is to participate directly in its top-ranking degree programs.

For example, the mechanical engineering degree program is one of the best in the nation, earning its accreditation from the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET. Students that participate in this program acquire skills in manufacturing, automation, and both thermal and mechanical systems. The curriculum works to extend a broad understanding of engineering concepts, like systems, components, and automated processes. With added mathematics and science training, students are better able to compete with other automotive mechanic candidates on the job market. Ultimately, Arkansas State is one of the best places to obtain the skills necessary to build a successful career as an auto mechanic.

6. Pittsburg State University

Score: 93

Tuition: $7,298
Graduation Rate: 53%
Retention Rate: 75%
Student-Faculty: 17:1

Pittsburg State University is one of the foremost institutions of postsecondary education in the state of Kansas. It opened as a manual and domestic arts training school in 1903, providing vocational opportunities for students both in and out of Kansas.

Today, the school operates an automotive technology program that provides that same, high-quality career-oriented education. Students can earn their bachelor’s in diesel and heavy equipment, automotive service technology, automotive technology, and more. For students aiming higher, Pitt even offers an automotive technology master’s degree. These programs equip students with skills in collision repair, advanced vehicle systems, and dealership and corporate transportation management–all of which contribute to Pitt graduates’ success in the auto mechanic job market.

7. Northeast Community College

Score: 92.8

Tuition: $3,480
Graduation Rate: 48%
Retention Rate: 67%
Student-Faculty: 16:1

Northeast Community College has been in operation since the conjunction of Northeastern Nebraska College and Nebraska Technical College in 1973. Today, it earns accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission and provides higher education to over 6,500 students in total.

The school runs several automotive mechanical degree programs, offering associates’ in auto body repair technology and automotive technology, as well as certificates that qualify individuals for jobs as automotive light service technicians. These specialized programs train students in frame alignment, metal finishing, panel replacement, automobile maintenance, brake and alignment technicalities, electric and fuel systems, and many other specialized skills. Ultimately, students who pursue Northeastern’s auto mechanic degrees and certificates find that their acquired skills make them valuable competitors on the job market after graduation.

8. Southern Illinois University – Carbondale

Score: 92.8

Tuition: $14,704
Graduation Rate: 41%
Retention Rate: 72%
Student-Faculty: 13:1

Since its establishment in 1869, Southern Illinois University has been committed to leading research as a postsecondary educational institution. According to the U.S. News and World Report, it runs the #185 best undergraduate engineering programs in the nation. SIU’s College of Applied Sciences earns accreditation from the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF).

SIU’s automotive technology program enables students to obtain their bachelors of science in automotive technology. Through this program, students acquire skills in embedded technologies, autonomous mobility systems, automotive business operations, and technology. The SIU student automotive technology organization runs an open auto shop where students have the opportunity to gain real-world experience in line with their education. Overall, the university offers a wide array of opportunities for prospective auto mechanics to further their education while still obtaining the skills necessary to succeed in their line of work.

9. Brigham Young University – Idaho

Score: 91.8

Tuition: $4,118
Graduation Rate: 57%
Retention Rate: 73%
Student-Faculty: 22:1

Brigham Young University-Idaho has operated in affiliation with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since its founding in 1888. Today, the school is home to over 34,000 on-campus students, in addition to its 15,000 virtual learners. It is one of the largest post-secondary educational institutions in the state.

The school’s department of engineering technology affords a variety of automotive technology degrees that equip students with skills necessary for careers as service engineers, technicians, managers, and more. These include a bachelor’s in advanced vehicle systems, automotive engineering technology, or manufacturing engineering technology. There are also certificates and associate’s degrees awarded in auto service technology, automotive technology, or engineering technology. Ultimately, BYU-I has a vast range of options for prospective auto mechanics who want to broaden their horizons through higher education and build a strong foundation for their future careers.

10. Ferris State University

Score: 91.3

Tuition: $11,788
Graduation Rate: 49%
Retention Rate: 76%
Student-Faculty: 16:1

Since its founding in 1884, Ferris State University has upheld its longstanding commitment to providing high-quality education. The school supports a student population of over 14,000, maintaining its position as the #22 best public school in the Midwest on the U.S. News and World Report.

FSU offers a variety of programs for those interested in pursuing a career around cars and technology. For example, they grant a bachelor of science in automotive engineering technology, as well as automotive management. Students also have the option of earning their associate’s in automotive service technology, and they can even minor in automotive management. The curriculum tied into each of these degree options equips students with skills in engineering, emission and dynamometer testing, vehicular systems, instrument calibration, and many others. Ultimately, Ferris State is an optimal choice for individuals looking to pursue a career in automotive technology.

11. University of Central Missouri

Score: 90.5

Tuition: $7,673
Graduation Rate: 49%
Retention Rate: 70%
Student-Faculty: 17:1

The University of Central Missouri first opened its doors in 1871, setting a precedent of academic excellence and community service that persists to this day. The school currently supports over 12,300 students and earns accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission. It is the #87 school in the Midwest, according to the U.S. News and World Report.

UCM offers three different automotive technology undergraduate degrees. Students have the option of specializing in automotive technology, design technology, or service management. They can also minor in automotive technology. These tracks equip students with technological skills in engine repair, design component engineering, and dealer/warranty operations. All in all, students gain a well-rounded education in the auto tech industry, putting their future career success as the first priority.

12. McPherson College

Score: 90.8

Tuition: $28,951
Graduation Rate: 37%
Retention Rate: 70%
Student-Faculty: 13:1

Since its founding in 1887, Mcpherson College has dedicated itself to serving the local community and enabling its students to reach for their goals. The school operates on a 27-acre campus, serving just over 800 students in a close-knit academic community. It is currently #26 among regional colleges Midwest, according to the U.S. News and World Report.

McPherson offers a wide variety of undergraduate degrees, but one of its most notable programs is in automotive restoration. This bachelor’s degree enables students to receive hands-on technical training alongside a broad base of education. They gain skills in auto restoration, specializing primarily in the collector car industry. Students have the option of earning their emphasis in historic automotive technology, automotive restorations management, automotive communications, automotive restoration design, or automotive restoration technology. Ultimately, the skills students obtain through their education at McPherson will enable them to achieve success in the automotive restoration field.

13. UA Cossatot

Score: 90

Tuition: $3,450
Graduation Rate: 44%
Retention Rate: 60%
Student-Faculty: 16:1

Cossatot Community College of the University of Arkansas opened its doors in 1975 and has since enriched its surrounding community through higher education and service. The school offers a wide variety of degrees that enable students to find success in their careers of choice.

The college grants automotive service technology certificates through its school of skilled and technical sciences. The National Automotive Technician Education Committee accredits the program, which is also Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certified. Students who participate in this program gain automotive technician skills that can apply to the aeronautics, military, and engineering fields, as well as just the auto-mechanical sphere. The school’s diesel technology certificate also prepares students to be proficient in the workplace and equips them with the skills necessary to do so. All in all, CCCUA offers one of the best auto mechanic preparatory educations in the nation, pushing its students to achieve their goals and find success in their field.

14. Alexandria Technical & Community College

Score: 90

Tuition: $5,416
Graduation Rate: 62%
Retention Rate: 68%
Stud1ent-Faculty: 22:1

Since its founding in 1961, Alexandria Technical and Community College has dedicated itself to the furthering of trade mastery and education. The school earns accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission and sits at #9 among the best community colleges in Minnesota, according to

The school operates through six schools of study, and its transportation and mechanics programs are top-of-the-line. Students who participate in this field of study can earn their associate’s diploma in diesel mechanics, focusing on cultivating skills in truck repair, maintenance, and even agriculture and construction equipment repair. Students also have the option of participating in a marine, motorcycle, & Powersports technician training program that partners directly with some of the largest name-brand manufacturers in the world. Ultimately, the opportunities Alexandria offers help students to find and be successful in lifelong careers.

15. Idaho State University

Score: 89.8

Tuition: $7,420
Graduation Rate: 33%
Retention Rate: 63%
Student-Faculty: 13:1

Since its establishment in 1901, Idaho State University has committed itself to provide research opportunities and education to students from all walks of life. The school operates programs in over 250 different fields of study, and it ranks #179 among national universities, according to the U.S. News and World Report.

ISU’s College of Technology offers over 40 different degrees and certifications, but one of its top programs is its automotive technology track. Students in this field can earn an advanced technical certificate, associate’s degree, or bachelor of applied science in automotive technology. They can also pursue a professional license or an associate’s of applied science in auto collision repair and refinishing technology. The curriculum behind these types of degrees equips students with skills in brake repair, alignment, transmission repair, body repair, welding, and more. With the trades they master, ISU students who graduate from these programs go on to find successful careers in the auto mechanic field.

List of 31 Auto Mechanic Colleges

RankScoreSchool NamesStudent to Faculty RatioTuitionRetention RateGraduation Rate (4-year)
1100.0Northwest Iowa Community College12$6,12069%65%
296.3Southern Adventist University13$21,95076%52%
396.0Walla Walla University14$28,03585%57%
493.3SUNY College of Technology at Delhi15$8,36079%44%
593.0Arkansas State University15$2,76076%20%
693.0Pittsburg State University17$7,29875%53%
792.8Northeast Community College16$3,48067%48%
892.8Southern Illinois University – Carbondale13$14,70472%41%
991.8Brigham Young University – Idaho22$4,11873%57%
1091.3Ferris State University16$11,78876%49%
1190.5University of Central Missouri17$7,67370%49%
1290.8McPherson College13$28,95170%37%
1390.0UA Cossatot16$3,45060%44%
1490.0Alexandria Technical & Community College22$5,41668%62%
1589.8Idaho State University13$7,42063%33%
1689.3Eastern Arizona College17$2,70064%35%
1789.0Montana State University – Northern15$5,95566%35%
1888.5Alfred State College of Technology18$8,57069%56%
1988.3Arkansas Tech University18$7,25470%41%
2087.8University of Alaska Anchorage14$8,58067%30%
2187.5Minnesota State University – Mankato22$8,18474%50%
2286.8Northern Michigan University20$10,72975%47%
2386.0University of Arkansas – Fort Smith17$5,59364%32%
2485.5The University of West Alabama14$10,04062%31%
2585.0Eastern New Mexico University – Roswell22$2,25652%41%
2683.5Utah Valley University22$5,72664%35%
2783.5Weber State University21$5,85965%34%
2883.0South Seattle College18$4,71732%33%
2981.8Indiana State University20$9,09062%41%
3080.0University of Northwestern Ohio24$11,35051%58%
3179.0Vincennes University22$5,90256%28%


Best Automotive Mechanic Schools 2020


1. Cabell County Career Technology Center

Score: 100

Tuition: $5,172
Graduation Rate: 93%
Retention Rate: 100%
Student-Faculty: 4:1

At Huntington, West Virginia’s Cabell County Career Technology Center, students have a wide range of career-focused opportunities, especially for those interested in the automotive technology industry. The school’s automotive technology program prioritizes fundamental knowledge in HVAC, suspension and steering systems, basic engine concepts, and electrical technicalities. Classes take place in the evenings and are primarily accessible to working adults. The automotive technology program prepares students to become entry-level automotive technicians, equipping them with a knowledge of basic engine concepts, brake systems, suspension and steering systems, and fundamentals of automotive technology. Both the specialization and the certification programs run as evening courses and are flexible and convenient for many students. Ultimately, Cabell County Career Training Center is one of the top institutions for occupational and technical education in the country, and it prioritizes student needs above anything else.

2. School of Automotive Machinists

Score: 100

Tuition: $33,750
Graduation Rate: 96%
Retention Rate: 95%
Student-Faculty: 16:1

The School of Automotive Machinists has been in operation for over two decades and is currently one of the top-ranking automotive technical training schools in the state of Texas. This institution is for individuals looking to build a career in engine manufacturing for teams like NASCAR, NHRA, or IndyCar. Students can pursue an automotive engine/block and cylinder head machining certificate or associate’s degree. Through the specially-designed curriculum, they receive training in engine block machining, short-block assembly, and cylinder head portioning, equipping them with the knowledge and the skillsets necessary to engineer some of the most powerful engines in the world.

3. Mitchell Technical Institute

Score: 97.8

Tuition: $5,720
Graduation Rate: 78%
Retention Rate: 81%
Student-Faculty: 13:1

The Mitchell Technical Institute is a public, professional school that hosts just over 1,100 students and runs technical training courses in 9 different fields of study. The institute’s agriculture and transportation technologies program, specifically, trains students in the areas of diesel power-Ag power technology, diesel power-light truck technology, and even power sports & marine technology. These programs equip students with the skills necessary to enter into careers as service technicians and mechanics, field technicians, service managers, and more. Coursework involves specialization in electronic controls, GPS, introductory diesel, hydraulics, drive trains, AC systems, and (for agricultural machinery) harvesting equipment. Ultimately, Mitchell Technical aims to cultivate the value of hard work and strong business sense within its students. With these skills, MTI students can go on to achieve great success in their fields.

4. New York Automotive and Diesel Institute

Score: 97.8

Tuition: $36,200
Graduation Rate: 77%
Retention Rate: 83%
Student-Faculty: 18:1

At the New York Automotive and Diesel Institute, students can witness the art of automotive technology, electronics and computerization, and diagnostics first-hand. The institute’s top-of-the-line programs specialize in collision repair technology, as well as automotive and diesel. For students looking to achieve higher credentials, the institute is certified to grant associate of science degrees in automotive technology, as well as automotive and diesel technology. The automotive technology degree focuses on diagnostic work, engine repair, and customer service. On the other hand, the automotive and diesel technology degree equips students with knowledge of gasoline engine performance, heavy-duty chassis, and preventative maintenance. All in all, the NYADI College of Transportation Technology is one of the top-ranking technical institutions on the eastern seaboard, and it offers its students opportunities that will carry them into successful lifelong careers.

5. North Central Kansas Technical College

Score: 96.8

Tuition: $6,144
Graduation Rate: 74%
Retention Rate: 89%
Student-Faculty: 10:1

North Central Kansas Technical College is one of the top-ranking career training schools in the midwest. It runs a variety of different programs in fields like business and technology, health, construction, and even the culinary arts. The school’s transportation technology program is one of its most popular, and participating students can specialize in automotive collision technology, diesel technology, or agricultural equipment technology. Through this curriculum, students become qualified to diagnose and repair agricultural equipment, perform checks, and even use computer programs to analyze technical problems. With the skills that they gain here, they can go on to become service, parts, or GPS technicians, shop supervisors, managers, and salespeople. All in all, NCK Tech is committed to the advancement of career education and training. It provides its students with hands-on experience that ultimately benefits them in their lifelong careers.

6. State Technical College of Missouri

Score: 96

Tuition: $6,120
Graduation Rate: 73%
Retention Rate: 85%
Student-Faculty: 12:1

The State Technical College of Missouri has been committed to the advancement of career-oriented individuals since its founding in 1961. Students who study here are able to gain experience with professional instructors who guide them through hands-on training. The school runs five different transportation technology tracks, including diesel technology, aviation maintenance, automotive collision technology, Powersports technology, and automotive technology. The courses that students take to earn these specializations also provide them with a wide array of valuable mechanical skills, such as auto restoration, maintenance, diagnostics, structural and mechanical repair, and many others. Ultimately the school aims to cultivate a strong work ethic and a commitment to the community within its student body. With these traits, as well as the skills students gain, they will be able to find great success in their chosen fields.

7. Pennco Tech – Bristol

Score: 95.8

Tuition: $22,095
Graduation Rate: 78%
Retention Rate: 74%
Student-Faculty: 13:1

Pennco Tech has been serving the local community of Bristol, Pennsylvania, since its founding in 1973. The school focuses on real-world career skill cultivation, providing opportunities for its students that launch them into successful trade careers. Students can participate in many programs, but some of the school’s most popular have to do with automotive technology or design. These include skills for a career as an automotive body & paint technician, automotive technology, or diesel truck technology. These curricula provide students with knowledge of auto body construction, surface preparation, refinishing, diagnostics, maintenance, and diesel systems and support. These skills are invaluable to Pennco graduates on the hunt for careers because they are rare and in relatively high-demand.

8. Lake Area Technical Institute

Score: 94.8

Tuition: $5,332
Graduation Rate: 71%
Retention Rate: 81%
Student-Faculty: 17:1

Since its founding in 1965, the Lake Area Technical Institute has been committed to the career training advancement of students in and out of the surrounding community. Currently, it is one of the top-ranking trade school institutions in the country. The school’s automotive technology program is well-known for the high performance of its students and graduates. This program offers an associate of applied science in automotive technology, as well as additional courses under the light-duty diesel technology option for diesel grads and the diesel option for automotive technology graduates. These courses equip students with extensive hands-on experience and a more comprehensive skill set that ups their job marketability. Ultimately, the Lake Area Technical Institute furthers its students’ real-world experience and qualifies them to meet the competitive nature of the job market with ease.

9. Advanced Technology Institute

Score: 94.8

Tuition: $13,200
Graduation Rate: 75%
Retention Rate: 75%
Student-Faculty: 20:1

The Advanced Technological Institute, located in Virginia Beach, is one of the top-ranking career training institutions in the nation. Its auto mechanical programs include automotive technology and heavy vehicle technology. Students in these programs can specialize in automotive technology and heavy vehicle technology with service management. Through these specialties, students gain skills in maintenance, diagnostics, and manual and automatic engine repair. Students who graduate from this program can find careers as electrical repairers, transportation equipment workers, automotive service technicians, electronic equipment installers, and even truck or farm equipment mechanics. Ultimately, the Advanced Technological Institute is one of the best options for prospective auto mechanics to enhance their skills and further their training, and those who utilize this institution go on to successful careers in the field of auto mechanics.

10. Ohio Technical College

Score: 94.8

Tuition: $20,880
Graduation Rate: 73%
Retention Rate: 80%
Student-Faculty: 17:1

Ohio Technical College is a top-ranking career training school located in the heart of Cleveland. It operates several programs related to the automotive mechanic industry, including auto diesel technology, automotive technology, classic car restoration technology, collision repair, high performance and racing technology, and motorcycle and Powersports technology. The school grants associate’s of applied science degrees in automotive mechanics, classic car restoration technology, collision repair and refinishing technology, diesel equipment technology, and many more fields. The curricula for these programs center around diesel engine repair, electrical/electronic systems, manual drivetrain & chassis, suspension & steering systems, HVAC/transportation refrigeration, and many other specializations. Ultimately, OTC is one of the top-ranking career training institutions in the country. With the skills they gain here, students go on to build successful, lifelong careers as auto mechanics.

11. New Castle School of Trades

Score: 94.3

Tuition: $19,950
Graduation Rate: 74%
Retention Rate: 77%
Student-Faculty: 11:1

The New Castle School of Trades is a top-tier career training institution that has been committed to the advancement of professional skills and education since its founding in 1945. Today, the school operates 11 different programs, all of which branch into multiple field specializations. The automotive technology program is designed to provide students with a broad set of technical skills and industry knowledge. Students in this program also have the opportunity to work in a lab setting with professional instructors gaining hands-on experience. Not only that, but this program equips students with computer systems knowledge as well, ensuring a more sure chance at future employment in a technologically diverse field. Ultimately, New Castle aims to push its students to excel and master the skills necessary to find success in the field of auto mechanics.

12. Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology

Score: 93

Tuition: $8,030
Graduation Rate: 67%
Retention Rate: 80%
Student-Faculty: 16:1

The Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology opened its doors in 1905. Since then, it has become a prestigious institution of career training and education. Students here can choose from over 20 different associate-level degree programs. For prospective car mechanics, however, the school’s automotive technology branch is the top choice. This program’s curriculum is specially designed to equip students with skills in basic vehicle service, repair and maintenance, and computer diagnostic programs. With the skills they gain here, auto tech students can go on to find careers as field and service technicians, managers, shop supervisors, electrical equipment technicians, and many other varieties of specialized technicians. For prospective auto mechanics, the skills they gain through this program are invaluable, and they will bring them into the job market as they pursue their lifelong careers.

13. Universal Technical Institute – Avondale

Score: 93.3

Tuition: $45,950
Graduation Rate: 70%
Retention Rate: 79%
Student-Faculty: 37:1

The Universal Technical Institute is a multi-faceted career training institution located in Avondale, Arizona. Officially, it is an automotive, diesel, and welding school. Though it offers a wide range of programs, its primary areas of curriculum focus are in automotive and diesel technology. Under these programs, students gain first-hand experience with real-world professional instructors and technicians. Program specializations are categorized according to car brands (Ford, Mercedes-Benz, BMW, etc.), and participating in the program gains students certification credit and extensive technical experience. Both the automotive program and the diesel program offer specialized training, so no matter which branch you choose to enter, you’ll receive hands-on instruction and have access to state-of-the-art equipment. All in all, UTI provides prospective auto mechanics with the skills they need to succeed in their fields and build lasting careers.

14. Lancaster County Career & Technology Center

Score: 91.5

Tuition: $13,840
Graduation Rate: 60%
Retention Rate: 82%
Student-Faculty: 17:1

Lancaster County Career and Technology Center is one of the foremost vocational training schools in the nation. It provides hands-on instruction in several different fields of study, but its automotive technology program is one of the top choices among prospective auto mechanics. This track prepares students to enter the field of automotive technology with a broad knowledge of diagnostics, maintenance, and repair techniques. Students can earn a specialized associate’s degree in automotive technology (AST), which will qualify them for careers as equipment, service, and repair technicians, supervisors, and many other specialized professions. Ultimately, Lancaster CTC is one of the best options for aspiring car mechanics who want to further their training and develop their lifelong careers in the auto mechanic industry.

15. Lincoln College of Technology – Grand Prairie

Score: 91.5

Tuition: $21,164
Graduation Rate: 74%
Retention Rate: 67%
Student-Faculty: 22:1

The Lincoln College of Technology is one of the foremost institutions for career training in the nation. It operates through several campuses in multiple states, including New Jersey, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, and a variety of others. The school’s automotive technology program is offered at ten of these institutions, meaning that the chances of a Lincoln Tech graduate finding a job are as vast and widespread as the school’s alumni network. As far as the automotive technology curriculum itself, Lincoln offers specializations in mechanics, technology, and service management, as well as AUDI, Volkswagen, and MOPAR CAP education management programs. Students receive hands-on instruction from real-world professionals and cultivate skills in exhaust gas analysis, diagnostics, repair, and transmission assembly. All in all, the Lincoln College of Technology successfully prepares prospective auto mechanics to pursue lifelong careers in this field.

List of 60 Auto Trade Schools

RankScoreSchool NamesStudent to Faculty RatioTuitionRetention RateGraduation Rate (4-year)
1100.0Cabell County Career Technology Center4$5,172100%93%
2100.0School of Automotive Machinists16$33,75095%96%
397.8Mitchell Technical Institute13$5,72081%78%
497.8New York Automotive and Diesel Institute18$36,20083%77%
596.8North Central Kansas Technical College10$6,14489%74%
696.0State Technical College of Missouri12$6,12085%73%
795.8Pennco Tech – Bristol13$22,09574%78%
894.8Lake Area Technical Institute17$5,33281%71%
994.8Advanced Technology Institute20$13,20075%75%
1094.8Ohio Technical College17$20,88080%73%
1194.3New Castle School of Trades11$19,95077%74%
1393.3Universal Technical Institute – Avondale37$45,95079%70%
1293.0Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology16$8,03080%67%
1491.5Lancaster County Career & Technology Center17$13,84082%60%
1591.5Lincoln College of Technology – Grand Prairie22$21,16474%67%
1691.3WyoTech – Laramie5$25,00069%75%
1790.5Washburn Institute of Technology17$7,63266%77%
1890.3Pickens Technical College22$4,51064%81%
1990.3Johnson College of Technology9$18,99174%61%
2089.5Lincoln College of Technology – Columbia22$27,79280%53%
2189.5Flint Hills Technical College14$6,04072%65%
2289.3Central Louisiana Technical Community College26$4,09869%70%
2389.0Salina Area Technical College12$8,50270%68%
2489.0Lincoln College of Technology – Denver24$21,33372%61%
2588.0Lincoln College of Technology – Melrose Park26$36,24371%61%
2687.3Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College9$4,72972%55%
2787.3Porter and Chester Institute6$17,22065%70%
2887.0Southwest Wisconsin Technical College12$4,40469%61%
2987.0Rosedale Technical College15$14,53060%75%
3086.8IntelliTec College – Grand Junction22$14,50066%67%
3185.8Lincoln College of Technology – Indianapolis26$31,37071%53%
3285.5South Georgia Technical College17$2,79869%57%
3485.5Automotive Training Center24$40,80065%65%
3385.3Ridge Technical College24$3,91940%86%
3585.0White Mountains Community College7$7,97069%54%
3684.5Fox Valley Technical College11$4,56570%51%
3784.0Southeast Technical Institute14$6,24073%45%
3883.5Traviss Technical College6$3,25127%76%
3983.5Moraine Park Technical College16$4,40373%44%
4083.0Dakota County Technical College21$5,71369%48%
4182.8Lincoln College of Technology – Nashville29$30,80063%59%
4282.3Waukesha County Technical College19$4,40572%41%
4381.3Northwest Kansas Technical College12$16,60064%50%
4479.5Bates Technical College21$5,39162%48%
4578.8Georgia Piedmont Technical College15$2,92459%49%
4678.8WSU Tech14$6,03759%49%
4778.3Nicolet Area Technical College8$4,40460%47%
4878.0Chippewa Valley Technical College14$4,36461%46%
4977.8Arizona Automotive Institute22$19,22055%52%
5077.3Wiregrass Georgia Technical College14$2,79462%43%
5176.5Ogeechee Technical College14$2,87658%46%
5276.5Western Technical College – Wisconsin9$4,40363%40%
5375.5Lakeshore Technical College13$4,24759%41%
5475.5Manhattan Area Technical College14$6,75053%47%
5575.3Northeast Wisconsin Technical College17$4,47958%43%
5675.0Lincoln Technical Institute – Philadelphia33$29,66755%45%
5774.0Athens Technical College14$2,79858%40%
5873.0Augusta Technical College16$2,79451%41%
5972.8Southeastern Technical College11$2,86357%31%
6071.3Mid-State Technical College12$4,43248%29%


What is the best mechanic school? has ranked the following schools as the best mechanic schools:

  1. Cabell County Career Technology Center
  2. School of Automotive Machinists
  3. Mitchell Technical Institute
  4. New York Automotive and Diesel Institute
  5. North Central Kansas Technical College
  6. State Technical College of Missouri
  7. Pennco Tech – Bristol
  8. Lake Area Technical Institute
  9. Advanced Technology Institute
  10. Ohio Technical College

What is the best mechanic college? has ranked the following schools as the best mechanic colleges:

  1. Northwest Iowa Community College
  2. Southern Adventist University
  3. Walla Walla University
  4. Pittsburg State University
  5. SUNY College of Technology at Delhi
  6. Arkansas State University
  7. Northeast Community College
  8. Southern Illinois University-Carbondale
  9. Brigham Young University-Idaho
  10. Ferris State University

How do I become a car mechanic?

While a high school diploma is the minimum requirement needed to become a car mechanic, those looking to start their path on the road to success can get a head start by attending a two-year vocational school and earning an official automotive degree.

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