Choosing a career path can be a challenging process. There are several career fields you can consider, and each has distinct advantages and drawbacks. Once you choose a career field, you still have multiple career options you can consider.

Identifying your areas of interest will help you identify how to prepare for your career. This will determine the coursework you need to complete and the credentials you must earn. If you’re an aspiring automotive career professional or entrepreneur, you may want to consider these options as you plan for your future.

Car Battery Restoration

Sustainable development is a crucial global issue. As countries worldwide address the impact of climate change, many consumers are looking for environmentally-friendly products. Reducing the volume of materials entering landfills is one way to promote sustainability. Vehicle owners can do this by recycling car batteries. In some cases, car batteries can be restored by replacing the chemicals.

Although the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) doesn’t provide specific career data for car battery restorers, it reports that hazardous materials workers earned median annual incomes of $43,900 in 2019 and could expect job opportunities to increase by 8% from 2019 to 2029 due to the increasing demand for environmentally-focused professionals. Creating a car battery restoration company is an excellent opportunity for individuals interested in sustainability who want to be entrepreneurs. You can establish a shop in which you recycle car batteries, and could potentially expand and recycle other vehicle parts. Your business can promote its services as an environmentally-friendly, affordable alternative for environmentally-conscious consumers.

One way to prepare for this career is to earn a masters in sustainability from a recognized graduate program. It’s possible to earn a master’s of business administration (MBA) in sustainability by completing 53 credit hours of coursework. The coursework includes 11 required courses and three electives. This type of program is designed to equip graduates with the skills to pursue a business career focused on sustainable development and business practices.

Industrial Designer

Industrial designers develop designs for manufactured products, including vehicles. Their work involves extensive research. Industrial designers also produce prototypes and conduct tests. Once they’ve refined a design plan, they present their research and seek funding for the product.

Individuals interested in renewable energy and automobiles may find this to be an ideal career path. Industrial designers can create electrical systems for vehicles that can be recharged. They can also refine other environmentally-friendly vehicle parts, such as electric batteries.

In 2019, industrial designers in the United States took home a median annual salary of $68,890 per BLS. Although it’s possible to enter this field with a bachelor’s degree, earning a master of science degree can increase job opportunities.

Car Sales

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Car sales is an excellent opportunity for those who want to work as an employee and those interested in being entrepreneurs. You can gain experience working in sales for a dealership before starting your own car sales company.

Car sales staff earned a median hourly income of $18.06 in 2015, per the BLS. Although sales experts may start their career without any formal training, completing a certificate program may increase job opportunities. Car sales professionals need excellent communication skills. They meet with potential buyers and highlight the features of different vehicles. They have to gather crucial information in presentation folders. Sales staff may provide consumers with a presentation folder outlining vehicle information to try to secure a sale. Sales staff also help buyers navigate the financing process and make arrangements to transfer the title and the owner’s insurance to the new vehicle. Once they’ve made a sale, car sales experts gather the title, loan information, and other pertinent data put it in a presentation folder, and give it to the clients.

Diesel Service Technicians and Mechanics

Completing an Automotive and Diesel Technology program will equip you with the training required to become a diesel service technician and mechanic. Diesel technology refers to mechanical equipment, such as diesel engines, that run on diesel fuel. You must complete 60 credit hours to earn an associate’s degree in automotive and diesel technology. Courses cover topics such as heavy-duty braking systems, climate control, and engine repair.

Earning an associate of science degree from a diesel technology program prepares you for several career options. You can specialize in working on brakes or heating and air conditioning systems. You can also work in fleet maintenance or run a diesel machine shop.

The BLS reports that diesel service technicians and mechanics earned median annual salaries of $48,500 in 2019 and could expect to see job opportunities increase by three percent from 2019 to 2029.

Body and Glass Repairers

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Body and glass repairers repair damaged vehicles. Glass repairers may replace windshields or use tools to stop windshield cracks from spreading. Body repairers look for structural damage and either restore damaged body parts or replace them.

While it’s possible to begin a career in this field with on-the-job training, completing a certificate program will increase job opportunities. The BLS reports that opportunities for these professionals will increase by 2% from 2019 to 2029. The BLS also indicates the 2019 median annual income for automotive and body glass repairers in the United States was $42,350.

There are many opportunities for individuals interested in a career or entrepreneurship opportunities in the automotive field. The educational requirements vary widely, which is one reason it’s important to consider your interests to ensure you focus on appropriate postsecondary studies that will prepare you for your chosen automotive career.