STATE OF THE ART INSTRUCTION - WCJC Automotive Technology program stresses hands-on, technical learning

December 10, 2019
STATE OF THE ART INSTRUCTION - WCJC Automotive Technology program stresses hands-on, technical learning

STATE OF THE ART INSTRUCTION - WCJC Automotive Technology program stresses hands-on, technical learning 

Wharton County Junior College's Automotive Technology program uses state-of-the-art equipment and training to prepare graduates for careers as automotive technicians. Pictured, from left, are department head Steve Witzkoski and instructor David Voulgaris.

WHARTON, TEXAS – Mechanically inclined? Have a passion for cars? The Wharton County Junior College Automotive Technology program is the perfect place for turning those interests into a rewarding career.

With the need for mechanics and technicians on the rise, there is plenty of opportunity for students interested in the field, says Steve Witzkoski, WCJC Automotive Technology program director. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics states that job outlook is “very good” with median pay hovering around $20 per hour or $40,000 per year. Texas has the second highest rate of employment in the field, behind California.

“With the high tech automobiles of today, the automotive industry is looking for technical people,” Witzkoski said. “They need highly motivated technicians to repair technical systems.”

Witzkoski has 35 years of experience in the field – earning certifications in a host of automotive specialties – and has seen the industry grow by leaps and bounds as technological advances have been developed. A graduate of WCJC himself, Witzkoski has taught at the college since 2008, first as an instructor and most recently as program director. He said the college’s Automotive Technology program establishes a solid foundation for students to advance in the industry. The program offers both a one-year certificate and a two- year associate’s degree, with courses covering all aspects of repair and diagnosis.

“WCJC’s program offers high-tech training using state-of-the-art instruction, the latest technology and equipment that prepares students to diagnose and repair vehicles,” he said. “We also operate a full-service automotive shop where students gain hands-on practical experience.”

New to the program this fall is Wharton native David Voulgaris. A former independent auto repair business owner for 39 years, Voulgaris brings a wealth of knowledge to the college. As an instructor he works diligently to ensure program graduates are well-equipped for employment in the industry.

“In the automotive field there are skills and knowledge that will help you become a better technician; we provide that here at WCJC in the form of classroom and lab education,” Voulgaris said. “My goal in teaching and training is to instill confidence and knowledge into the students so they can be productive and quality technicians. Our future depends on qualified people to fill the gaps in the technological fields.”

For additional information on the Automotive Technology program, visit the college website at