Schools like UTI are an utter waste of money. I attended the Avondale, Arizona campus for the auto/diesel program and went in with the intention of getting accepted into the Porsche program.
While at UTI I maintained a 4.00 average, obtained 12 SOC awards, and was on the deans list 4 times. I am a United States Navy veteran and when I first spoke with a UTI recruiter I explained my desire to take the Porsche program and they assured me that my Post 911 Bill would cover it. Now, lets fast forward to my graduation. I wound up getting accepted into the Porsche program but when I went to speak with financial aid, I was informed that the VA did not cover the specialty manufacture programs like the one I wanted.
I would have had to take out a student loan to attend the Porsche courses. It really pissed me off at that time because attending this program was the sole reason for attending UTI. If the recruiter would have been honest from the get go, I would never had attended UTI. I spent 14 years in the Navy and wanted my benifit to cover 100% of my school.
I did not want any student loans to pay back. I made this crystal clear to my recruiter and he flat out lied saying my VA benifit would cover the Porsche portion of school just to get me to attend.
The above issue is not what infuriated me with UTI. I am an optimistic kinda guy and I tried to look for some good in the 1 1/2 years I spent at UTI.
I assumed that maintaing a 4.00 average with perfect attendance, getting 12 SOC's, and getting on the *** dean's list 4 times would elevate me above the jack off's that barely got by, had no SOC's, and never made the dean's list - I was sadly mistaken. When I went and spoke with my counselor about the jobs that were available, I was given the same low paying options as everyone else. There were no higher paying job choices for execptional students. The reward I got for going to school everyday and applying myself was to be offered the same 12 - 15 dollar an hour jobs as the lowest guy that graduated.
I am appauled that UTI does not work more closely with dealership and high end garages to give only top students that put forth a 100% effort good jobs. I did not do all of this at UTI to start of changing oil at a dealership for 12 dollars an hour. Most dealers actually look down on a UTI certificate and would rather someone off the street that works their way up from being a porter to full time mechanic. That way of thinking is idiotic and shows a problem not with UTI but with the auto mechanic industry as a whole.
I don't know of any other industry that would look down on someone for going to school to learn a trade. I could go on and on about the problems with being an auto mechanic with the weekly paychecks for a starting mechanic being the worst. I worked at 2 dealerships before finding a real job with a solid weekly paycheck in a totally different field. While some starting mechanics may find that perfect dealership or garage where there is enough business to give every tech 40 flag hours a week, most beginers do not.
The realaty is that most beginers will be changing oil at 12 bucks and hour or if they do get put on the floor they may make 18 and hour but only flag 20 hours for the week. Either way, if you are an adult with adult bills and responsibilities then starting off as a mechanic making maybe 400 to 450 a week may not be a good choice. Beging mechanic jobs are good for kids that have absolutely no debt or adult responsibilities to take care of. A begining mechanic must be ok living off peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, living in ghetto apartments, and driving a POS vehicle.
A beging mechanic will have to endure this for about 1 year or more untill money gets better. I will steer anyone from being a new mechanic because of the flag hour system of getting paid. Starting mechanics will not flag 40 hours at most dealerships/garages across the United States.
If you are ok with spending 40 hours at work but only taking home pay for 15 or sometimes as low as 10, then by all means go to UTI and put yourself in more debt than your job will enable you to pay back. The auto mechanic industry sucks with the way they pay people and schools like UTI should be ashamed of themseves for putting thousands of people in a financial situation that will take them most of their working lives to pay back.
Product or Service Mentioned: Universal Technical Institute Program.
Reason of review: Poor customer service.