Possibly the most diversified of all trades, our Heavy Equipment Technician program provides you with the skills to obtain a career in the oil field, the transportation industry or in a shop environment. If you enjoy working on vehicles, have a strong mechanical aptitude and look forward to a variety of employment opportunities, this could be the trade for you.
Our Heavy Equipment Technician program provides you with hands-on experience while learning to maintain, repair and overhaul heavy vehicles and industrial equipment such as rippers, ditchers, backhoes, scrapers, tractors and trucks. We will show you how to work on components of the vehicle including brakes, suspensions, power train, engines, electrical, computer systems, driveline and fuel injection. You will learn how to interpret work orders and technical manuals, test repaired equipment for proper performance, diagnose faults or malfunctions and replace defective parts, components or systems.
If you enjoy precision work, problem solving and working with your hands, you may prefer this field. Having the ability to work independently or as part of a team, and to think logically and keep up to date with changes in technology are other valuable characteristics.
The apprenticeship term for this field is four years, including a minimum of 1500 hours of on-the-job training and eight weeks of technical training each year. We offer all four years of the program in Medicine Hat. At Medicine Hat College, we offer small class sizes, individualized attention and access to updated technology. The Heavy Equipment Technician program is one of eight apprenticeship programs leading to journeyman status and solid careers in the skilled trades.
One of the major reasons students select this career is because of the wages and the job diversity. The Heavy Equipment Technician program can direct you to employment opportunities in the oil field, gas compression and open pit mining. Others find careers working on highway trucks, off-road vehicles such as earth moving equipment, or as a shop foreman, manager or owner.
Many Albertans employed in this classification work in wholesale trade; construction; transportation and warehousing; oil and gas extraction and mining support activities; and metal fabrication and machinery manufacturing.
The first step to becoming an apprentice is finding a job in the trade you would like to study. This is like any other job search, except you are looking for an employer who is willing to hire you as an apprentice in a trade.
Once you have found employment, you can complete the Apprenticeship Application and Contract. This will allow you to be accepted as an apprentice tradesperson. Access the form at www.tradesecrets.gov.ab.ca.
After your application has been accepted, you will begin training with your employer and are now eligible to register for training at Medicine Hat College. You will then be sent an information package from the college on how to proceed with your registration (dates, times and location of first day of class).
2016/2017 Tuition and Fees
Tuition fees are set as per Government of Alberta policy. Books and supplies vary with each trade and cost about $400 per training period.
A $100 non-refundable deposit is due upon registration. The balance of tuition is due two weeks prior to the first day of classes. Unpaid tuition will result in an automatic withdrawal from class and you seat will be offered to the next person on the waitlist. No refunds will be issues after the third day of classes.
Certification and Graduation
You will be awarded an Alberta Completion of Apprenticeship Certificate when you successfully complete all requirements of your apprenticeship contract. In addition to and depending on the trade, you will receive a Journeyman certification.
Trades eligible for an Interprovincial Red Seal Certificate have an additional exam to write and upon successful completion of the exam, the seal is affixed to the Journeyman certificate when issued.
In the province of Alberta, there are two kinds of regulated trades.
Compulsory CertificationMust be either a journeyman or apprentice to work in the trade as legislated under the Alberta Industry and Training Act.
Optional CertificationTrades training is offered but optional.
Once signed, the contract must be delivered to Apprenticeship and Industry Training. An identification card, course outline booklet and, for most trades, an apprenticeship record book are issued to you. At this point, your apprenticeship training begins.
You must write an Apprenticeship and Trade Certification exam at the end of each technical training class. The passing mark is 70%. If you do not pass, you may be offered an apprenticeship supplemental exam. You must take the course again if you do not pass the supplemental exam.
To progress from one training period to the next and get a wage increase, you must
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