Learn what makes automobiles and their systems work, how and why they fail, and how to use tools and equipment to diagnose and repair the defects quickly and effectively. Study and hone your skills in a beautiful lab with state-of-the-art equipment—including a Mustang AWD-IMP dynamometer and Hunter wheel alignment and tire equipment. Gain hands-on experience (and earn some cash) by working in the student-run auto shop. Earn a degree that will position you for success in the automotive industry.
Students in the WWU automotive program benefit from highly-qualified faculty who come from diverse professional backgrounds, a low student-to-teacher ratio, learning to use top-of-the-line equipment, and unrestricted access to the automotive lab. Students graduate from the automotive program armed with extensive real-world experience gained in our student-run auto shop and are positioned well to begin their careers. In fact, our graduates have a 100% placement rate and are promoted with greater frequency and to higher levels than their co-workers.
The automotive lab shares space with University Auto—our student-run auto shop. The facility has been specifically designed to accommodate an automotive training facility and a full-service shop. The automotive classroom, located upstairs within the lab, is updated and comfortable and boasts large windows looking both outside and into the shop, wireless internet, and excellent presentation equipment.
Some of the tools and equipment owned and utilized by the automotive lab include:
- Mustang AWD-IMP adjustable wheelbase all-wheel dynamometer, capable of accurately measuring and controlling up to 2000 horsepower.
- Hunter Hawkeye Elite four-wheel alignment machine with wheel-off measurement and adjustment capability.
- Hunter GSP9700 Road-Force tire/wheel balancer
- Hunter Auto34 tire changer (absolute top of the line)
- Alldata Pro subscription on any wired lab computer (service information)
- General Motors Tech2 dealer-level scan tool
- BMW GT-1 dealer-level scan tool
- Snap-On Modis system with lab scope
- Fluke 192 color labscopes
- Matco Determinator Pro scan tool and lab scope
- Snap-On and RTI R-134a air conditioning recover/recycle machines
- Sioux valve grinding equipment
- Miller wire-feed welder
- Glass-bead machine
- Hot-water parts washer
- 4 dual post lifts, 1 alignment rack
- Allen Smart Engine Analyzer
An integral part of the automotive program is University Auto, a student-run automotive repair business right here on campus. At University Auto, students get extensive experience working on real cars with real problems. In addition to the valuable experience it provides, University Auto is a great way for automotive students to make money while earning their degree. Student employees at University Auto have access to all the tools and equipment of the automotive program, so there are few limits on the type of mechanical, electrical, and diagnostic work that can be performed. Come check us out! We'd love to show you around the shop.
University Auto Club
The University Auto Club is sponsored by the Department of Technology and is open to anyone who loves cars. The Auto Club hosts activities for it's members such as:
- Frequent drives through the beautiful Walla Walla Valley and beyond
- Skiing and wake boarding outings to the Snake River
- Barbecues, picnics, and ice cream/frozen yogurt parties
- Annual Super bowl party
- Alumni car show
How our program stands out
(and why you should study here)
A modern curriculum designed and implemented as a result of research done for a Master's Degree thesis. The study included a comparison of curricula from all four-year automotive technology programs in the U.S. as well as feedback from industry experts on content they deemed important for four-year automotive students.
100% placement rate
Our graduates enjoy a 100% placement rate in companies and careers all over the United States. They are promoted with higher frequency and to higher levels than their co-workers.
Degree in demand
We are one of only 15 schools in the United States that offer a Bachelor's degree in automotive technology or automotive management, and one of two schools to do so in a Christian setting.
WWU's automotive faculty are highly qualified, with many years of real-world experience working on European cars at the dealership level. But, in addition to the dealership-level experience, our faculty are involved and experienced with aftermarket performance modifications and tuning. This diversity in experience and expertise gives students many more options when choosing their careers.
Experience with industry equipment
Our automotive lab has outstanding and modern equipment that is not used as just a marketing tool -- students actually learn how to use the equipment as part of their education and lab experiences.
We offer high-level classes not available at a community or technical college. Classes such as Advanced Engine Performance, Body Electronics and Computer Systems, Diesel Engine Performance, and Hybrids & Alternative Fuels.
Automotive students have the opportunity to work at University Auto, our on-campus auto repair business. This gives students the opportunity to make money while providing real-world experience, working on real cars with real problems.
WWU Automotive has a low student-teacher ratio and small classes. You will learn from highly-qualified faculty -- not research assistants. Our low student-teacher ratio also means that we get to know each other personally. Students are not just a number on the teacher's grade roster.
High ASE scores
WWU's automotive students traditionally achieve very high scores compared to their peers on ASE exams, the accepted standard for automotive technician certification.
Access to auto lab
As an automotive student, you will have basically unrestricted access to the automotive lab and its equipment. This privilege is not afforded to anyone else on campus. We only require that you participate in a short mandatory safety training session (required of all automotive students) and schedule your use through the auto shop manager.
Wide range of experience
You will see nearly every kind of vehicle imaginable come through our automotive lab, and they are all used for educational purposes. From Ford to Fiat, Honda to Hummer, Aston Martin to Mercedes — we see it all and give our students the opportunity to learn and experience a wide variety of vehicles and their issues.
Discounts on tools
Just like at other schools, WWU's automotive students have the opportunity to purchase professional tools at very substantial discounts, usually 50-55% off. This offers many benefits, the two most important to students being: 1.) you don't have to share tools with other students while working in lab, and 2.) you gain an immediate ownership and pride in your education because of your investment. We are serviced regularly by both Snap-On and Matco tool representatives.