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Heavy Equipment Maintenance Major

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Heavy Equipment Maintenance

1,599 Associate's Degrees Annually
23 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
#22 in Popularity (Associate's)
$54,000 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Heavy Equipment Maintenance Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many heavy/industrial equipment maintenance graduations there were in 2019-2020 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Basic Certificate 4,405
Undergraduate Certificate 2,836
Associate Degree 1,618
Bachelor’s Degree 13

What Heavy Equipment Maintenance Majors Need to Know

People with careers related to equipment maintenance were asked what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. They weighted these areas on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the highest.

Knowledge Areas for Equipment Maintenance Majors

This major prepares you for careers in which these knowledge areas are important:

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  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

Skills for Equipment Maintenance Majors

equipment maintenance majors are found most commonly in careers in which the following skills are important:

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  • Repairing - Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.
  • Troubleshooting - Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
  • Equipment Maintenance - Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Abilities for Equipment Maintenance Majors

Equipment Maintenance majors often go into careers where the following abilities are vital:

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  • Arm-Hand Steadiness - The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
  • Manual Dexterity - The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Control Precision - The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.

What Can You Do With a Heavy Equipment Maintenance Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with equipment maintenance:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Elevator Installers and Repairers 12.2% $79,780
Industrial Machinery Mechanics 6.7% $52,340
Maintenance Workers, Machinery 5.6% $47,060
Millwrights 9.9% $55,060
Mobile Heavy Equipment Mechanics, Except Engines 8.2% $51,920
Rail Car Repairers 4.9% $56,220
Wind Turbine Service Technicians 94.8% $54,370

Who Is Getting an Associate’s Degree in Heavy Equipment Maintenance?

1,618 Associate's Degrees Annually
6% Percent Women
20% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
Heavy/Industrial Equipment Maintenance runs middle of the road when it comes to popularity, ranking #22 out of all the trade school majors we track. In 2019, about 1,599 graduates completed their associate’s degree in this field. This major tends to be male dominated. About 94% of recent graduates are men.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of equipment maintenance majors is as follows:

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Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 18
Black or African American 120
Hispanic or Latino 135
White 1,268
International Students 8
Other Races/Ethnicities 69

Geographic Diversity

Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in Equipment Maintenance. About 0.5% of those with this major are international students. The most popular countries for students from outside the country are:

  • British Virgin Islands
  • Botswana
  • Mexico
  • Canada

How Much Do Heavy Equipment Maintenance Majors Make?

Salaries According to BLS

Equipment Maintenance majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $52,510 to $56,250 (25th to 75th percentile). This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.

Median Salary for a Heavy Equipment Maintenance Major  ( 52510 to 56250 )
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250K
Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
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250K
Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
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Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )
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250K

Some degrees associated with equipment maintenance may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.

Find out what the typical degree level is for equipment maintenance careers below.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
Less than a High School Diploma 2.7%
High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED) 41.5%
Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production) 37.2%
Some College Courses 7.2%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 7.3%
Bachelor’s Degree 1.9%
Master’s Degree 0.6%
First Professional Degree - awarded for completion of a program that: requires at least 2 years of college work before entrance into the program, includes a total of at least 6 academic years of work to complete, and provides all remaining academic requirements to begin practice in a profession. 0.8%

Online Heavy Equipment Maintenance Programs

In the 2019-2020 academic year, 339 schools offered some type of heavy/industrial equipment maintenance program. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.

Degree Level Colleges Offering Programs Colleges Offering Online Classes
Certificate (Less Than 1 Year) 0 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 243 3
Certificate (2-4 Years) 65 0
Associate’s Degree 193 2
Bachelor’s Degree 0 0
Post-Baccalaureate 0 0
Master’s Degree 0 0
Post-Master’s 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

Is a Degree in Heavy Equipment Maintenance Worth It?

The median salary for a equipment maintenance grad is $54,000 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 35% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $282,000 after 20 years!

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to equipment maintenance.

Major Number of Grads
Vehicle Maintenance & Repair 61,193
Heating, Air Conditioning, Ventilation & Refrigeration 19,871
Electronics Maintenance & Repair 8,056
Precision Systems Maintenance 1,310
Mechanic & Repair Tech (Other) 1,111
Mechanics & Repairers 420
Energy Systems Maintenance and Repair Technologies. 61

References

*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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