How to Select BMW Technician and BMW Specialist Schools
Students considering a career as a BMW technician should earn an associate's degree or diploma in auto technology from a community college or technical school. They should also obtain special training from one of BMW's specialist schools. Some BMW dealers and repair shops hire and train applicants without BMW specialist training, but most prefer candidates with such a background.
BMW pays the tuition for students accepted to its STEP program, which is highly selective. Admission requirements include graduation from a post-secondary automotive technical school with at least a 98% attendance record and a minimum 3.5 GPA. Applicants must pass a written test, submit to a personal interview and relocate to work in a BMW center located in the U.S. region of their choice.
Further considerations when choosing a BMW technician or specialist school:
- Every prospective BMW technician should consider the BMW Service Technician Education Program (STEP), available in Ohio, Arizona, North Carolina, California, Florida, Massachusetts and New Jersey.
- It takes 10 to 24 weeks to complete the STEP program, depending on the level and how rapidly students want to finish, and STEP graduates often find themselves working in positions starting at $14-$19 per hour.
BMW Technical and Specialist Schools Degree and Program Overviews
The BMW STEP Level 1 program is the primary BMW technician training program. It accepts 200 to 300 students per year and is available at six of the eight STEP training locations. The BMW Paint and Body STEP accepts 24 students per year for training at three STEP training locations.
Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte, N.C. and Massachusetts Bay Community College in Ashland, Massachusetts offer the BMW Associate degree program. This program accepts 30 students per year and combines a broad associate's degree education with automotive classes as well as lectures and labs revolving around the latest BMW autos, systems and repair equipment and techniques. Students receive hands-on training through required cooperative work experience at BMW dealerships.
The 12-week BMW FastTrack program, offered by five STEP training programs, is designed for students who hold an automotive degree or certificate from a community college or technical school. The 10-week MINI STEP program, available from two STEP training partners, prepares students for entry-level BMW repair specialist positions.
10 Schools with BMW STEP programs
|Ohio Technical College||Cleveland, OH|
|Universal Technical Institute||Avondale, AZ|
|Central Piedmont Community College||Matthews, NC|
|Chabot College||Hayward, CA|
|Universal Technical Institute||Orlando, FL|
|MassBay Community College||Ashland, MA|
|BMW of North America, LLC||Ontario, CA|
|BMW of North America, LLC||Woodcliff Lake, NJ|
|Lincoln College of Technology||Grand Prairie, TX|
|Atlanta Technical College||Atlanta, GA|