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Discussion Starter #1
Im going to college soon and want to go to college and do something I love to do... Building Vehicles!!! I hear a lot of people are engineers and I want to take those kind of classes. what is the college Major?? Mechanical Engineering? does it have anything to do with Vehicles? Wanting to know this because I would like to better myself at this! To bad they don't have dedicated offroading colleges!!!! (or do they... lol)
 

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If that's really what you want to do, don't go to an ordinary college. Go to a vocational college, and when you're picking classes, talk to the guidance people (at the college, not high school) about which classes will teach you about welding, fabricating, metalworking/machining, etc, specifically practical skills as opposed to theory. Make sure you're really on top of your math, particularly in trig and calculus.

Not only will you get the skills you're looking for, and access to better equipment to learn on than you would ever find at a regular university, you'll be picking up skills very few have these days, and you'll very likely be able to land a really well-paying job when you graduate. Knowing welding and metalworking, particularly MIG/TIG and other plasma/electric welding, will prepare you for jobs in the energy industry that pay a LOT of money (pipeline welding mainly) when you get out, which will put you ahead of 70-80% of all graduates, and give you all you'll need to excel at building rigs.


ETA: welding isn't the only skill in high demand. Anyone who really knows machining, especially computer-controlled systems, can just about write their own paychecks; it's not very glamorous but it really pays well and the skills are eminently applicable to 'wheeling.
 

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There is a tech school in Indianapolis that has some sort of race car fab degree. Ivy tech maybe? Not sure of the exact name of the program either.
 

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There's a place like that about a mile from me, but they lean towards engine/transmission/chassis building for race cars. There's still a few dirt tracks around here (Bedford, Latrobe, Lernerville, etc.), and that's primarily what they work on.

If you're wanting to do 4wd and lifted trucks, I'd actually contact the manager of your favorite local 4wd shop - even the manager of your local 4WP if you have one, since they're a national chain; ask them which school/program THEY'D recommend, or which one most of their mechanics graduate from. That'll be your biggest clue towards whose offering what you want/need.
 

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The Fab School. If that is the life you want, a 4 year degree will be a waste.

Remember for every successful fabricator there are 10 struggling to make ends meet, and 100 who failed.
 

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...

Remember for every successful fabricator there are 10 struggling to make ends meet, and 100 who failed.
This is why I suggested a straight vocational college. He can learn welding and fabricating in a general metalworking/machinist context instead of specifically learning to build rollcages and fabricating axle mountings. Then, the fabrication can be a hobby, and he can earn his living doing machinist work or welding for an energy company or similar.
 

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I too, recommend a vocational school instead of a 4 year.

Get your 2yr associates in a trade that fits your hobby. With that said, be careful not to burn yourself out by not getting a break from your hobby. A buddy of mine was in your shoes after high school and loved working on his truck and wheeling. Signed up for the military to be a hummer mechanic thinking he'd love working on that kind of stuff and getting paid for it, and now hates his life and wants out of the military.

If you or your parents want you to get a 4yr degree because that's what everyone else is doing these days, remember that debt is slavery, and most 4yr colleges will enslave you to 40-60k in debt. A vocational school is typically less expensive and only takes 50-65 credits instead of 120. The neat thing about a 4yr degree is that most major colleges will accept your 2yr automatically (assuming you have passing grades) as a good starting point towards completing a bachelors.

Side note: I did the whole 4yr mechanical engineering thing. Not one class was about automotive design specifically.

Take note: Mechanical Engineering Technology | DegreeLink | Indiana State University
TECHNICAL SPECIALITY
ECT 280 Introduction to Automation (or equivalent)
MET 304 Engineering Analysis
MET 306 Applied Mechanisms
MET 329 Fluid Power Technology
MET 403 Advanced Computer Aided Design (CAD) Concepts
MET 404 Engineering Design and Management
MET 405 Economic Analysis for Engineering and Technology
MET 406 Strength of Materials
MET 408 Elements of Machine Design
MET 409 Senior Project in Industrial Technology
MET 413 Applications and Gaging of Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing
MET 430 Senior Seminar
MFG 371 Manufacturing Processes and Materials

TECHNICAL ELECTIVES
Select two courses from the following (or approved substitute):
MET 337 Thermo Systems
MET 351 Cooperative Industrial Practice
MET 407 Tool and Die Design

MANAGEMENT ELECTIVES
Select one course from the following (or approved substitute):
MGT 301 Survey of Management
TMGT 361 Quality Systems and Tools
TMGT 471 Production Planning and Control I
TMGT 478 Industrial Organization and Functions

MATHEMATICS
MATH 123 Analytic Geometry and Linear Algebra for Engineers
MATH 301 Fundamentals and Applications of Calculus

OTHER REQUIREMENTS
Satisfy deficiencies from the associate degree
Courses to satisfy the University's Foundational Studies requirements
Fulfillment of University graduation requirements, including 45 credits of upper division (300-400 level) coursework
At least 24 credits must be taken in the College of Technology, with at least 12 of those credits taken in the department.
 

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Also you could look into UTI or wyotech they both have different courses that cover numerous things just something to look at as well.
 

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I'm in college now for mechanical engineering, and I rarely use the information I learned at my internship "engineering" transmission parts. Kinda sad actually for what I pay for a piece of paper...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
If that's really what you want to do, don't go to an ordinary college. Go to a vocational college, and when you're picking classes, talk to the guidance people (at the college, not high school) about which classes will teach you about welding, fabricating, metalworking/machining, etc, specifically practical skills as opposed to theory. Make sure you're really on top of your math, particularly in trig and calculus.

Not only will you get the skills you're looking for, and access to better equipment to learn on than you would ever find at a regular university, you'll be picking up skills very few have these days, and you'll very likely be able to land a really well-paying job when you graduate. Knowing welding and metalworking, particularly MIG/TIG and other plasma/electric welding, will prepare you for jobs in the energy industry that pay a LOT of money (pipeline welding mainly) when you get out, which will put you ahead of 70-80% of all graduates, and give you all you'll need to excel at building rigs.


ETA: welding isn't the only skill in high demand. Anyone who really knows machining, especially computer-controlled systems, can just about write their own paychecks; it's not very glamorous but it really pays well and the skills are eminently applicable to 'wheeling.
Thank you for your input! would you suggest any schools?
 

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Where are you located? There are probably a number of good schools across the country, so the first step is to see what's close to you. If no schools are close by, then you can start considering schools further away. Unlike 4 year colleges, not all voc colleges have housing, so if there's a school close to you, you can save a bundle since you won't have to rent a place.

Just as a talking point, welder salaries start at $35-40k per year, and can hit 6 figures once you get experienced. And that goes up significantly if you have what it takes to learn underwater welding (dangerous, but in demand worldwide). Apparently, something like 25% of skilled welders are due to retire in the next 5 years or so, and for every two retiring, only one new welder enters the workforce, so the market ought to really open up. Combine that with the surge in oil and gas exploration, and there will be plenty of work to go around.

Two schools I saw in the articles I was reading are Augusta Technical College in Georgia, and Fox Valley Technical College in Wisconsin, just as examples of the kind of schools you can look for.
 

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If you want to engineer vehicles then mechanical engineering (preferably a masters degree) is what you need.

Not surprisingly schools such U-Michigan, Michigan State, and Wayne State have strong programs for automotive engineering. As the automotive industry expands beyond Detroit other areas are starting to offer automotive related programs. Spend some time surfing the SAE website: SAE International
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Where are you located? There are probably a number of good schools across the country, so the first step is to see what's close to you. If no schools are close by, then you can start considering schools further away. Unlike 4 year colleges, not all voc colleges have housing, so if there's a school close to you, you can save a bundle since you won't have to rent a place.

Just as a talking point, welder salaries start at $35-40k per year, and can hit 6 figures once you get experienced. And that goes up significantly if you have what it takes to learn underwater welding (dangerous, but in demand worldwide). Apparently, something like 25% of skilled welders are due to retire in the next 5 years or so, and for every two retiring, only one new welder enters the workforce, so the market ought to really open up. Combine that with the surge in oil and gas exploration, and there will be plenty of work to go around.

Two schools I saw in the articles I was reading are Augusta Technical College in Georgia, and Fox Valley Technical College in Wisconsin, just as examples of the kind of schools you can look for.
I live in Western Tennessee near Memphis. Might have a look at the school in Georgia you are talking about
 

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I live in Western Tennessee near Memphis. Might have a look at the school in Georgia you are talking about
Try these places in TN also:

Moore Tech College of Technology | William R. Moore College of Technology in Memphis

Online College Degrees - Affordable & Accredited - Ashworth College in Norcross GA

Lincoln Technical Institute & College of Technology Career | Trade | Vocational Schools in Gallatin TN, but they don't offer welding there, only automotive. You can do welding at their TX, CT or CO. Here's their programs list and the campuses they're offered at: CAREER PROGRAMS | lincolnedu

I can't tell you how good these schools are, but at least it's a place to start checking.
 

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Try these places in TN also:

Moore Tech College of Technology | William R. Moore College of Technology in Memphis

Online College Degrees - Affordable & Accredited - Ashworth College in Norcross GA

Lincoln Technical Institute & College of Technology Career | Trade | Vocational Schools in Gallatin TN, but they don't offer welding there, only automotive. You can do welding at their TX, CT or CO. Here's their programs list and the campuses they're offered at: CAREER PROGRAMS | lincolnedu

I can't tell you how good these schools are, but at least it's a place to start checking.
Thank You
 
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