Diesel Power Technology

  • School of Professional Studies and Management
  • Type of Degree: Associate of Applied Science (AAS)
  • Location: Randolph Center Campus
  • Credit Requirements: 62

 The associate degree program in Diesel Power Technology answers an increasing need for skilled diesel service technicians for the growing agricultural, heavy-duty truck, and earth-moving equipment service industry. Graduates are prepared to enter the repair, parts, or management aspects of the diesel power service industry. Job categories include general repair technician, parts professional, service advisor, and, with experience, specialty or lead technician, parts manager, or service manager. Self-employment is also possible and a small business management course is included in the curriculum. Graduates are currently or have been previously employed by Milton CAT, Ryder Truck Rental Systems, Woods CRW, Sheldon Mack/Volvo, Champlain Valley Equipment, R.R. Charlebois Inc., Clarke’s Truck Center, J & B International, VTrans, DATTCO Transportation, Casella Waste Management, and many independent repair facilities, fleets, and farms. Several graduates are self-employed.

The program covers all significant skill areas of the repair industry and includes modules on parts and supplies acquisition, record keeping, customer relations, and preventive maintenance. Electronic control of mechanical systems, system design considerations, and the analysis and diagnosis of system failures are examined through the coursework. Students are exposed to agricultural equipment, earth-moving equipment, and heavy-duty trucks and have the opportunity to work part-time at local service providers. A 400-hour summer internship is included which provides students with production experience and an opportunity to assess future employment possibilities.

The coursework covers all systems down to the component level on agricultural equipment, earth-moving equipment, and heavy-duty trucks. All mechanical systems are covered in the curriculum. Electrical, electronic, and hydraulic systems maintenance, diagnosis, and repair are emphasized. A combination of classroom instruction and hands-on lab practical experience is used at a one-to-one ratio. Students must possess their own set of hand tools for use in the lab and for the summer internship program. A tool list is available from the Office of Admissions or the DPT department.

Coursework in English and technical communication, computer software skills, technical math, physics, small business management, and general education are also included.


A student with an Associate of Applied Science in Diesel Power Technology will be able to:

  1. Understand the theory of operation, plus diagnostic service procedures, for diesel engines heavy-duty hydraulic and air brake systems; heavy-duty suspension and steering systems; heavy-duty electrical and electronic systems; heavy-duty drive train systems; advanced technology vehicles and equipment; heavy-duty transmissions; and heavy-duty heating and air-conditioning systems
  2. Communicate effectively with customers and business relations
  3. Exhibit the principles of professional conduct in all aspects of customer relations

The student must possess a set of hand tools for use in the lab and for the summer internship program. A tool list is available from the department. The student should also have a dependable vehicle to travel to and from the lab facilities. Students are required to wear black work pants and steel-toed leather work or hiking boots in all lab sections. The college provides t-shirts.

Careers in Diesel Power Technology

Placement Rate
Vermont Tech

Vermont Tech data: 6 Month Outcome Survey, Class of 2017 National Data: National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) First Destinations for the College Class of 2016 (October 2017)

Job Projections
Job projections




Projected Employment Growth for Diesel Service Technicians and Mechanics, 2014-2024 (source: BLS). National data: Job openings for all occupations (source: BLS)

Median Pay
All Occupations

2016 Median Pay (Diesel Service Technicians & Mechanics) vs. National Median for All occupations (2016), Source: BLS

Vermont Tech data: 6 Month Outcome Survey, Class of '12-'16
  • Advance Auto Parts Bethel Mills
  • Brink's Auto Transport Casella Waste Systems
  • Champlain Valley Equipment Dimmick
  • FleetPride Formula Ford, Inc.
  • G. Stone Commerical New England Kenworth
  • Land Air Express-New England Mal's Auto &Truck Repair Inc
  • Milton CAT in Richmond, VT RR Charliebois
  • State of Vermont Sugarbush Resort
  • Ted Green Ford Vermont Agency of
  • Transportation Vermont Technical College
  • Diesel Technician Vehicle Maintenance Technician
  • Technician Motor Mechanic
  • Faculty Parts Pro
  • Truck Driver

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