Heavy Mechanical Trades

Foundation Program
Also available as:
  • Full Time
LENGTH: 1 year
CAMPUS: Prince George
FEES: Estimated at $4,489
START DATE: Fall 2022
  • Alternate Delivery
Application Status
Applications still open.
  • Overview
  • Courses
  • Location & Dates
  • Entry Requirements
  • Fees


Do you have an interest in repairing heavy machinery? Heavy mechanical trades mechanics and technicians are critical to keeping the wheels of industry turning. In this 36-week certificate program you will learn to repair transport trucks and trailers, buses, crawler tractors, loaders, skidders, feller bunchers, excavators, and more. The Heavy Mechanical Trades Foundation program prepares you for a career as a Heavy Mechanic.


This career is suited for people who enjoy hands on problem solving. Tradespeople working in the heavy mechanical trades need to be comfortable working with a range of equipment, from sophisticated electronics to heavy tracks and hydraulic parts. Mechanics and technicians may work indoors in a shop or plant, outdoors where equipment is being used, or a combination of both.

Heavy duty mechanics may be employed by equipment owners and operators, or by independent service companies who do maintenance and repairs for customers.

Industries in which heavy-duty mechanics are critical include:

  • Transportation and trucking
  • Forestry Mining
  • Oil and Gas
  • Construction
  • Agriculture

Heavy-duty mechanics might work indoors in a shop or plant, outdoors where equipment is being used, or a combination of both.

What you will learn

As heavy equipment and diagnostic tools become increasingly advanced, people with up-to-date training will be in demand in industry. CNC is proud of our state of the art Heavy Mechanical Trades facility, which opened October 2018. In partnership with industry we offer students the chance to work on cutting edge training aids and equipment.

Gain relevant experience working with:

  • Wire rope and winches
  • Hydraulic, air and alternate brake systems
  • Diesel engines
  • Electrical, spark and mechanical diesel systems
  • Power train components

Become an Apprentice

This foundation program will provide entry level practical skills and academic knowledge to prepare you to begin the apprenticeship pathway in one of the three trades listed above . You do not need an employer sponsor to participate. In fact, one of the main reasons to complete a foundation program is to gain experience and familiarity with the trade, giving you a competitive advantage to finding an employer to hire you as their apprentice.

The Heavy Mechanical Trades program is unique in that it provides core training for three trades. Completing the first two years of the program, plus the required work based training hours, allows you to receive your Diesel Engine Mechanic Certificate of Qualification. To be a Red Seal certified Heavy Duty Equipment Technician or Truck and Transport Mechanic you would complete the first three levels of the Heavy Mechanical Trades program, followed by the specialized 4th level program for your chosen trade. There also is the opportunity to be dual Red Seal ticketed in Heavy Duty Equipment Technician and Truck and Transport Mechanic by completing the 4th level and work based training hours for both programs.

Upon successful completion of the foundation program, you will receive credit with the BC Industry Training Authority (ITA) for Level 1 technical training in Heavy Mechanical Trades. Once you are officially registered as an apprentice with ITA, you will then be able to complete the work based training hours (on the job training) and higher levels of apprenticeship training for your chosen trade.

Apprenticeship programs provide a unique approach to post-secondary education, combining classroom based learning (known as technical training) with on the job training. This enables you to “earn while you learn,” significantly reducing the need for student debt and building your career NOW instead of waiting until you’ve completed your education.

Heavy Mechanical Trades Courses

Learn to repair transport trailers, crawler tractors, loaders, skidders, feller bunchers, excavators, and more. Note: Course content for Heavy Duty Equipment Technician and Truck and Transport Mechanic is identical up to Level 4. Students must chose apprenticeship completion in either Commercial Transport Mechanical Repair or Heavy Duty Mechanics.

Heavy Mechanical Trades Foundation: Program Outline


Locations & Dates

CNC programs have varying lengths and start dates to meet your needs, and are offered across multiple campuses where possible. Don’t see the campus you’re looking for? Check back with us soon as this page is updated throughout the school year.

Fall 2022 Prince George In Class 38 weeks

Entry Requirements

The admission requirements mentioned below are the minimum requirements.

  1. Grade 10 with English 10 with a “C” or higher
  2. Common Grade 10 or Apprenticeship and Workplace Math 11 or Trades Math 041 or Math 030 with a “C” or higher

Students who do not meet the above requirement, and think they may be admissible as a mature student should consult a CNC counsellor/advisor.

Need help meeting these requirements. Check out our Academic Upgrading options.

CTC Option

High school students may be eligible to take this program. See your school counsellor for details.

Selective admission

A program for which seats are filled based on approved selection criteria. Such criteria may include, but are not limited to, assessment, portfolio submissions, interviews and grade point average. Meeting the minimum requirements for admission does not guarantee acceptance to the program. 

Selection process

Students are encouraged to submit a resumé and handwritten statement indicating reasons for wishing to enter the program as well as complete two pre-Trades evaluations: a test of mechanical reasoning skills, and the College English/Math Achievement Test (EMAT). Both of these items are included in the selection criteria listed below and will be awarded points.

If the program is over-subscribed, students will be selected based on the selection criteria listed below.

  1. The letter grade for English 10, English 030 or Communications 11 or equivalent will contribute its actual points to the selection process: e.g., “A” = 4.0, “B+” = 3.33, etc.
  2. The letter grade for Foundations of Math and Pre-Calculus 10, Math 030, Apprenticeship and Workplace Math 10 or Math 030 or equivalent, will contribute its actual points to the selection process: e.g., “A” = 4.0, “B+” = 3.33, etc.
  3. Credit in Physics 11 or equivalent with a grade of “C” or higher will be awarded 4 points.
  4. The mechanical reasoning portion of the Student Readiness Assessment will be awarded a maximum of 5 points.
  5. The English portion of the Student Readiness Assessment will be awarded a maximum of 1 point.
  6. The Math portion of the Student Readiness Assessment will be awarded a maximum of 1 point.
  7. Credit in one or more trades-related courses at the Grade 12 level with a grade of “B” or higher, or successful completion of any foundation-level trades training program or documented experience of one year in a trade will be awarded 3 points.
  8. Credit in any of the following: English 11, Principles of Math 11, or equivalent, or Trades Math 041 and Trades Math 042 with a “C” grade or higher will be awarded 3 points.
  9. Credit for submitting a resumé and personal handwritten statement indicating their reasons for wishing to enter this program will be awarded a maximum of 3 points.

Maximum points = 28

High school graduation with English 12, Math 11 and Physics 11 (where applicable) is recommended and required by some employers in order to be indentured as an apprentice.

Invest in your future

The estimated cost for this program is $4,489.
  • Tuition: $3,109
  • Student fees: $905
  • Medical/Dental Fee (Fall semester only): $260
  • Tool Deposit: $200 (Refundable)  

These costs are an estimate and do not include books. Student fees vary by campus. Check the fee schedule for more details.

Books for this program can be purchased from the bookstore.

Paying for college

We're here to help. You can apply for scholarships and bursaries through CNC. We can also help you find loans and other funding. Visit Financial assistance to find out how. 

Salaries and employment

Looking for a job? Check the student employment opportunities or trades training job board.