Attending an auto mechanic school is the ideal way to start a career in the industry. A pre-apprenticeship program provides students with all the training they need to begin working as an apprentice in a real garage, where they gain real-world experience as they work towards becoming a certified mechanic.
As you progress in your career though, you may want to consider pursuing Red Seal certification. The Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Program is a nationally recognised qualification for journeypersons in 55 different trades, and serves as an official endorsement that your skills meet the national industry standard.
Read on to find out more about the benefits of completing the Red Seal exam later in your career.
1. Red Seal Certification Allows You to Become a Mechanic in Any Province
If choose to become an auto mechanic in Montreal, you’ll complete an apprenticeship after auto mechanic college, and then sit exams with the Comité paritaire de l’industrie des services automobiles de la région de Montréal (CPA Montréal) to obtain your official professional mechanic certification. Unfortunately, this qualification does not mean you are certified to work in other provinces in Canada, who each have their own professional designation processes.
The Red Seal program, however, is regulated by the Canadian Council of Directors of Apprenticeship (CCDA), who work hard to harmonise trade standards and practices in all Canadian provinces and territories. As a result, the qualification is recognised all across the country, allowing you to work freely in any province you choose, greatly increasing your ability to travel and access work opportunities all over the country.
2. It Will Help You Advance Your Career After You Become a Mechanic
Even if you choose to continue working in your own province, Red Seal certification can still be vital to advancing your career. The qualification is seen as a gold standard for tradespeople, and many employers require it for more advanced positions such as head mechanics, shop foremen, and specialist technician positions. Becoming Red Seal certified will ensure you have access to as many opportunities as possible, and progress to more senior and lucrative positions.
Not only that, but you may see some benefit of the program even before you’re ready to pursue certification. The CCDA runs a number of initiatives which support the training of professionals in Red Seal trades, including incentive grants to employers who take on apprentices, and grants for apprentices themselves both during and on completion of their training.
3. A Red Seal Qualification is Proof of Your Skills and Experience as a Mechanic
Above all else, however, becoming Red Seal certified is way of gaining formal recognition for your skills and experience once you become an auto mechanic. The Red Seal exam is only open to candidates who have accumulated 9,720 documented hours of work experience, meaning that only those who have been practicing for a number of years in the industry can obtain it.
Not only that, but since the qualification is widely known across a number of trades, a number of your customers will be familiar with it, and advertising your certification will serve as valuable reassurance that their vehicles are in good hands.
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