WyoTech, a Laramie, Wyoming-based diesel tech and auto mechanic trade school, is one of many institutions that have been invaluable to the American economy since the COVID-19 outbreak. WyoTech has been actively providing students with the building blocks of success to help them achieve career growth at a fraction of the price of a four-year institution.
According to analysis by staffing leader PeopleReady, most in-demand skilled trade jobs are remaining unfilled for extended periods of time due to the shortage of qualified workers. This is an increasingly concerning reality, as the major pharmaceutical companies producing the COVID-19 vaccine rely on trade workers to manage the packing, temperature monitoring, and transportation of these essential substances.
“America was built on the trades and depends heavily on them to this day. The transportation industry is hitting an all-time high for both personal and commercial use. As a result, the demand for technicians serving dealerships, agriculture, transportation companies and factories, is also at an all-time high,” said Jim Mathis, President of WyoTech. “Whether they know it or not, Americans rely on truck drivers, diesel semi-truck drivers and other skilled workers for their groceries, vaccines, package deliveries and much more.”
“America needs trade education more than ever and WyoTech is focused on delivering the best education for automotive technology, collision and refinishing and diesel technology,” said Mathis.
While major universities work to prepare students for entry-level positions, trade schools’ goals are the same, but with a specialized interest. The primary goal of trade schools is to get graduates ready for an entry-level position as a technician. A common misconception is that trade schools and diesel tech schools are meant to produce perfect workers. This is inaccurate. The truth is, trade schools aim to provide students with the fundamentals to succeed within a technician role, not mass-produce experts within the field.
“Students and their families should really think about what their long-term goals are. If you are seeking the all-around collegiate experience, then a four-year university is for you. If you are passionate about the trades and interested in earning a paycheck sooner than later, spending time with people in the field, contacting local business owners in the trades you want to pursue and learning about the professional behaviors desired by employers, then trade school is the hands-on experience you need,” said Mathis.
“At WyoTech, we strive to offer the best student experience and the best training to give them the foundation for the best possible outcome. I truly believe WyoTech prepares its students for an entry-level job; it is the individual’s responsibility to show up and put in the work. WyoTech is not a walk-in-the-park type of training. We are in school five days per week, eight hours per day, with a strict attendance policy. It is all meant to prepare students for the real world, with real-world experience,” Mathis said.
WyoTech holds quarterly job fairs for students, during which companies from across the country come to recruit candidates for technician roles in a variety of industries. Every WyoTech student is unique in terms of their background, skillset and interests. Regardless, the WyoTech instructors make it a priority to give each individual student a chance to succeed and secure a job after graduation.
“WyoTech loves to see its graduates doing well in their field, taking care of their families and living the life they choose. We know that if we keep our vision of building a school with the best experience, the best training and the best outcomes, our students have all the tools they need to be successful. Ultimately, it is their attitude and commitment that determine the end result,” added Mathis.
Another misconception that seems to be associated with trade schools and diesel technician programs is that the value of the education is inferior when compared to a four-year college. In reality, trade schools offer students a comprehensive curriculum designed to help them secure a position in a prosperous and recession-proof job market.
“Somewhere along the way, America has created a ‘less than’ story about people entering the trades in lieu of a traditional university path. I believe COVID exposed the reliance we have on skilled workers in this country and brought awareness to the earning potential available in the trades. Parents need an education on the different paths that their kids can explore with career outcomes in high-demand fields,” said Mathis.
“The truth is, whether it is a four-year university, a diesel mechanic school, or automotive schooling, students are being prepared for entry-level positions in the field of their choice. The difference with WyoTech is that we are doing it in nine months with full time days versus 12-15 hours a week for four years,” said Mathis.