Steering to a Career in Imports
Student Deacon Ante takes advantage of unique automotive program
To understand Deacon Ante’s interest in automotive vehicle repair—specifically import vehicles—you must go back in time to when the V8 engine was cool. Commonly associated with full-size vehicles and often called gas-guzzlers, Deacon grew up with many different types of these vehicles around him.
“My dad was big into vehicles with V8 engines,” Deacon explains. “It was just normal for me to see them around. So when I saw small import cars going faster than V8 vehicles, and doing it with half the cylinders and half the weight, I was impressed.”
Deacon was intrigued enough to start a hobby of working on import cars, particularly with smaller engines to improve total horsepower and torque. It was during one of those times of tinkering that his fiancée asked him why he wasn’t fixing cars for a living, as he already spent so much of his downtime working on them.
In the fall of 2021 Deacon enrolled in the Automotive Technology – Imports program at Fox Valley Technical College, a one-of-its-kind associate degree program within the Wisconsin Technical College System. Throughout school, he’s also worked part-time on many import brands. He’s now at Bergstrom Acura, where he hopes to stay after he graduates in May 2023. Until then, he’s taking in every bit of knowledge and skill he can from this unique program at FVTC, its instructors and his co-workers.
“The instructors are incredibly knowledgeable because they came from the field themselves,” Deacon says. “With the experience they have it adds another level to the classes because it is not just from a book; it’s from a person who has been there and done it.”
Automotive Technology – Imports is a 64-credit associate degree program. Students learn about all eight areas of Automotive Service Excellence, along with hybrid vehicles. The program also prepares a student to become a Certified Master Technician, which is required by many dealerships. FVTC alumni make an average annual salary of $55,876 five years after graduation.
Other career opportunities include:
- Import Technician
- Parts Specialist
- Service Manager
- Service Writer