"Let's pay attention to kids who are not going to college, which ends up being about 60 percent of the kids... and get them trained for the jobs that are there. Because, you know, there are auto mechanic jobs paying $50,000, $60,000 that they can't get filled. There are airline mechanic jobs paying a lot of money that can't get filled." Remarks at AFSCME forum 6/19/2007
Hillary Clinton on Tuesday, August 21st, 2007 in
There are plenty of jobs available for trained automobile and airline technicians, but Clinton overestimates how much they pay.
Clinton is correct that about 60 percent of Americans between the ages of 18 and 24 are not enrolled in college. She also is correct that the automobile and airline industries are facing significant mechanic shortages.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that there will be 34,000 unfilled jobs for auto mechanics and 4,000 for airline technicians each year through 2014. However, she exaggerates the pay that graduates of vocational schools can expect to earn in these professions. An auto mechanic earning $50,000 to $60,000 would be in the 90th percentile of earnings for that occupation, according to government data. The average salary for an auto technician is $32,450; for an airline mechanic it's $45,290.