I attended this school for automotive at the Watertown CT campus. Enrolled and completed the course. During the first few months I felt good about attending and positive until I realized that the school does not provide any credentials upon graduating. After the first few months I felt scammed and so did most of the people in my class. My instructor was fired half way through the course and the duration of my education consisted of you tube videos and b.s. conversations provided by my new instructor.
Their attendance policy changed four times during the course. By the last term if you had missed one week of class during a term you were dismissed without a refund. During the course a students father was killed in an accident on a motorcycle. No courtesy was shown. If he didn't make up 14 hours in one day he would have been dismissed with no refund.
I started with 23 students in my class when I graduated there were less than ten. From what I understand 3 more people dropped out the week after I left. They all left for a number of reasons. The most common reason was the ridiculous cost of tuition and the lack of return that would be achieved while working in the field. It cost me almost 30 thousand dollars to attend porter and Chester. I haven't met one mechanic that make over 30,000 dollars a year (within there first five years in the field) yet. They inflated and talked up the field.
Convinced kids that they would make good money and that it was a good choice in career. "They" being retired mechanics with no educational background or degree. I still work in the field and feel trapped because of the amount of money I spent on school. I come home every day in pain because of the physical demand and strain that the work puts on me. I feel like I am 40 at the ripe age of 26. The worst part is that I can't even afford my school payments.
I have worked at 4 dealerships and a tire shop during and after the course and I can't find anywhere that will provide me with a livable income. I would make more at a Lowe's or a home depot store as a manager. To be honest I find that insulting seeing that I have 30,000 thousand in school debt and 40,000 in tools which I had to purchase just to be considered for employment. To make matters worse my school payments are twice as much as I was told they where going to be and the bill makes no sense. I even called the billing company to have them explain it to me and the person I talked to said this. " I don't understand how they do it, the computer does it that way" currently between the school loan and the federal loan I owe just shy of 900 dollars a month and my line of work doesn't provide anywhere near enough to pay for school and living expenses.
This is by far the worst decision I have ever made. I feel cheated, lied to and scammed. Thank you porter and Chester for an insane amount of debt and nothing to show for it.
P.s I applied my self and tried my hardest. I am being negative for a reason. Attend a four year state school and receive a real degree. It will probably be cheaper if not the same price.
Terrible school. Wish someone had warned me prior to starting. Paying for tools and uniforms that I never even got. Buncha thieves in the auto class in Watertown. Absolute nightmare. Ha ha even better is when they continue to withdraw money from an account that they were told not to. And when you ask to speak to the campus director and never get a call back. Lawsuits are a b****.
The job placement is another joke. A job at Jiffy Lube making minimum wage after a year of classes and $15,000 in loans. Not recommended.
I attended this school summer 2012-2013, if it wasn’t for my ability to get lucky, find MYSELF a job in my field of study, WITHOUT THE HELP OF THIS SCHOOL, I'd be unemployed. The curriculum is outdated and way too basic for “post secondary education.” Most of the students are uninterested and disruptive. The instructors are more into disciplining and posturing students.
The instructors also have very little ability to help students hands on. In my opinion most of the instructors are former WARRANTED TECHS that could not hack it in the industry anymore so they decided to yell at lost 20 somethings for not tucking their shirts in.
IVE SEEN STUDENTS IN SOME OF THE MUST UNSAFE CONDITIONS, WORKING ON SYSTEMS THEY KNOW NOTHING ABOUT. I HAVE LEARNED MORE IN MY ALMOST 2 YEARS AS A FLAT RATE AUTO TECH THEN I DID IN MY MANY WASTED HOURS AT THIS SCHOOL. PLEASE STAY AWAY!
My step-daughter is enrolled in the automotive program. There is a snow storm and the only "School" open is Porter & Chester. These kids are driving long distances in terrible weather and they are inexperienced drivers and the administrator said it "Wasn't a school, it's a business". Businesses pay people. You can quit a job. They let her out of class to straighten out financial aide so they get paid, but refused to excuse a few hours due to a snowstorm. It's a disgraceful place just looking to make money off of our kids with empty promises and their own agenda.
I had gone to Porter and Chester in Watertown Ct for automotive technology in 2012 and I give this school a big two thumbs down. I would never recommend this school to anyone that wants to learn a trade. find someone willing to teach you on the job.
If I could go back and tell myself to listen to my father I would of never gone to that school. I learned very little and no longer even work in the field because of lack of growth, older techs aren’t leaving because they can’t afford to and businesses can’t afford to pay lube techs more than $10-$13 an hour which is not enough to live on for the type of work you do and the it doesn’t cover the cost of paying the loan back if you’re like most people and cannot manage money well.
I was a student in porter and Chester in Branford CT for automotive. What a scam. First their teaching methods sucks you might as well get a automotive book and read it yourself. Just a PowerPoint and you fall asleep cuz you are listening to a PowerPoint for 5 hours straight.
Second you have to kiss the teachers *** or he won't help you. My teacher was only helping one student he liked. HEY I'm paying thirty thousand jus like him and he lies in front of your face saying he wants to succeed but it *** . Don't fall for it and honestly there's so many people in your class and one teacher trust me you won't get the help your paying for trust me Porter and Chester is a scam. Do not recommend and I hope people start to realize how much of waste of time that school is. I didn't learn *** and karma is a *** I hope they run out of business those crooks.
I had 3 different teachers in my one year span of going here. They kicked my friend out because he smashed his truck when he got hit by an 18 wheeler in the winter of 2012-2013.. I went into this "school" knowing basic as I worked in a family garage before for about a year. I learned next to nothing for $26,000. Biggest regret of my life. I'm not a B level tech and my knowledge came from on the job experience. Now currently getting my business degree. You'll learn more on the job while getting paid than at this school paying to sit there.
Terrible school. Wish someone had warned me prior to starting. Paying for tools and uniforms that I never even got. Buncha thieves in the auto class in Watertown. Absolute nightmare. Ha ha even better is when they continue to withdraw money from an account that they were told not to. And when you ask to speak to the campus director and never get a call back.
I have been attending PCI Watertown, Ct since earlier this year. I am enrolled in the Automotive program night class and my experiences have been extremely mixed. First and foremost, I do believe...
...the instructors care a great deal for their students (at least in auto). They feel a great deal of frustration when something in the shop goes missing, loses parts, or gets broken. The tools in the shop are a little like a harlot in that everyone has had a shot at them, meaning that they will break, wear, or miss critical parts. Yet they continue to do the best with what they have. I personally enjoy when an instructor calls b.s. on the book because their life experience in the automotive field has taught them otherwise.
The students are definitely a mixed bunch. There is a wide range in aptitude among my class mates which, at times, can be extremely frustrating if you are quick to process new concepts. I believe there should definitely be different tiers based on technical aptitude. The silly (and very basic) entrance exam made me laugh as it was extremely generalized and presented no challenge at all.
The administrative staff is another matter altogether. I often find that admin staff is very difficult to reach as they tend to leave about an hour before the night class starts. The recruiters, of course, are paid to present the school in the best light possible(see old adage about something being too good to be true). The administrative staff could do a much better job of actually listening to their student body.
Their attendance policy is extremely unforgiving and a little ridiculous. I have seen no evidence to support any statement that the administrative staff has any kind of feelings towards the students who attend the school. Got in a serious care accident? Out for more than 7 days in ICU? Your education with them gets terminated. Have multiple family issues during a semester that require you to miss school? If it requires you to miss more than 7 days you’re out of there. No feeling. No remorse. Just done.
On to the career resource center, a room with 2 chairs, 2 computers, one of which doesn’t function despite many attempts to have the issue resolved, and a printer.
The “job placement specialists” seem to be very out of touch when it comes to the students needs. E.G.: A job listing in West Hartford for an Assistant Manager for a shop probably doesn’t apply when you have students from New Milfrod, Naugatuck, Waterbury, Danbury, Bristol, Wolcott, and Plymouth. Never mind that the course is designed to give us a working understanding of how basic automotive technologies work and in no way qualifies any of us to be running a shop even as an assistant. Yet the “specialists” seem to think otherwise, which in turn might give some who are hopeful and naive a sense that they are quite accomplished when in fact they may have a novice level of understanding.
The facilities are adequate for a beginning in auto tech. The lab is a great place to practice, while the shop provides a place to put that practice to actual customer, faculty, and student vehicles. The class room is exactly that. A place where lecture meets with Power Point presentations and training videos to help the students understand the theory and practices they are there to learn.
Is it for everyone? No. If everyone could do it then everyone would be doing it. It takes a passion for vehicles and a commitment to the knowledge you will gain to be successful. Is the automotive course going to teach me everything I need to know? Certainly not. As technology changes so do the vehicles we drive, but it is a good foundation to build on. Is it a waste of time to go to this school? Everyone will have a different experience of course, personally I believe that with the proper motivation and a commitment to one’s education it can be quite a rewarding experience.
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