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For more than 50 years, Universal Technical Institute (UTI) has graduated more than 200,000 students who have a passion for cars, motorcycles, marine machines, NASCAR, trucks and more. Here, seven UTI graduates
share their insights for current students and new graduates, on how to find success in their industries.
Vincent Lozada, a UTI Diesel Technology graduate decided to attend UTI years after he had already
been in the working world, as a warehouse employee and truck driver. Despite the challenges of making a career change well into adulthood, he says it's totally worth it to find happiness, and he's proud of the example he has shown his family.
“Yes, it's going to be a little bit of a struggle, but you're going to get out [of school] what you put into it,” Lozada says. “Anyone who has the opportunity and has been thinking about [pursuing a technician career], stop thinking
about it and go do it.”
There's nothing more rewarding than fixing trucks and making customers happy, says Nick Genemaras, UTI diesel graduate. A great attitude gets you farther in the industry, he says.
“It's a very rewarding industry,” Genemaras says. “You do have to be motivated to do it. You do have to want to learn. You have to want to get advice from people and use it to your best extent. It's only going to get better, I think,
from here on out. The trucks are getting more complicated...and they're going to need highly trained guys who are able to work on them.”
For current students, engaging in the classroom provides some big benefits, says UTI diesel graduate Marcy Negron.
“Honestly, attendance is the best thing you can do, because even if you study at home afterwards, when you're there, you get...not only what's in the book, but also what the instructor has to tell you about his experience,” Negron says. “To
me, that's the most valuable part of being in the school, because when you get everything from a person's point-of-view besides having the book, you get more knowledge that way, and you can translate that into your workplace when you start working.”
Jerome Jackson, a UTI graduate who is now a diesel technician at Crown Lift Trucks, says his employer is looking for people who are always presentable to the customer.
“It's never the manager or the service person that's there, it's always the tech that manages the warehouse day to day, every day,” Jackson says. “They love for you to be presentable to that customer every day.”
Discovering new skills is a constant in the industry, says Marissa Andrews, Marine Mechanics Institute marine graduate. Andrews says participating in school prepares you for the hard work in the industry.
“It's fast-paced,” Andrews says. “You're go, go, go all the time, and you will come across new stuff all the time. It's not repetitive at all. Everything you do in this field, you probably for the most part have not seen it before. You
don't know everything. You're always learning something new, and that's what I love about it. It will take awhile to really learn a lot of it, but if you're really passionate about fixing these things, you'll do good.”
Madison Conrad knew she wanted to work with race cars, so she moved from New Mexico to North Carolina to immerse herself in the industry. She says she has always felt welcomed, from school to work.
“Throughout my time at NASCAR Tech and through my time here at Roush Yates Engines, I feel like I've gotten a lot of support from people, absolutely,” Conrad says. “They're really supportive of a female being in this industry. It's new, it's exciting, they help me
in any way they can, and they're supportive. I don't feel like they look at me as a female. They look at me as a coworker and a respected asset to the team.”
Education is essential in order to advance in the industry, says UTI automotive graduate Austin Adair.
“These cars aren't just nuts and bolts,” Adair says. “You have to have the knowledge to walk in here and pretty much go through the entire electrical system of a car. Once you have that under your belt, you're pretty valuable.”
Watch more UTI grad stories here, and head to uti.edu for info on all our schools.
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1) UTI is an educational institution and cannot guarantee employment or salary.
2) For important information about the educational debt, earnings and completion rates of students who attended this program, and to review the applicable Gainful Employment disclosure, visit www.uti.edu/disclosures.
6) UTI graduates' achievements may vary. Individual circumstances and wages depend on personal credentials and economic factors. Work experience, industry certifications, the location of the employer and their compensation programs affect wages. UTI is an educational institution and cannot guarantee employment or salary.
7) Some programs may require longer than one year to complete.
10) Financial aid and scholarships are available to those who qualify. Awards vary due to specific conditions, criteria and state.
12) Based on data compiled from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment Projections (2016-2026), www.bls.gov, viewed October 24, 2017. The projected number of annual job openings, by job classification is: Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics, 75,900; Bus and Truck Mechanics and Diesel Engine Specialists, 28,300; Automotive Body and Related Repairers, 17,200. Job openings include openings due to growth and net replacements.
15) Manufacturer-paid advanced training programs are conducted by UTI’s Custom Training Group on behalf of manufacturers who determine acceptance criteria and conditions. These programs are not part of UTI’s accreditation.