(SWEETWATER, Texas) – A lifelong interest in renewable energy was the reason Isaias Lopez decided to enroll at Texas State Technical College.
Lopez, of Caldwell, said he began looking at schools outside of Texas to learn more about his interest. Once he found TSTC’s Wind Energy Technology program, he found his future.
“I have always been interested in how renewable energy works and wanted to learn more,” he said. “I looked at different schools, but when I saw that TSTC offered the program, I knew it would be a perfect fit. One, it was close to home, and second, because of TSTC’s reputation.”
Lopez said he learned about how instructors and other staff members work with students to search for the right job.
“The TSTC staff will give you 100 (percent) if you give them 100 (percent). I am planning to do my best while I am in school,” he said.
Now in his second semester, Lopez has been able to pick up more knowledge about wind energy.
“We are covering more information about the systems and how things run,” he said. “It is great that we can come in here and do things hands-on. To see how things work in person is the best way for many of us to learn.”
Lopez said the instructors make sure what the students read online or in books is covered during lab sessions.
“You can only imagine so much while reading, but our instructors do a great job of explaining how things are supposed to work,” he said.
Lopez said one aspect of the program he likes the most is the camaraderie of classmates.
“We are always working with each other,” he said. “We want to make sure we all succeed and are focused on helping each other.”
In pursuing an associate degree, Lopez knows one of the best parts of the program is yet to come.
“I cannot wait to make that first climb in the tower, open the hatch and take a look around,” he said. “Everything we are doing right now is leading us to that point in the program. I know I will be a little nervous, but having experienced instructors will help settle those nerves.”
Lopez said he appreciates the experience he has had so far at TSTC and hopes more people take advantage of what is offered.
“TSTC offers so much for people. I tell people all the time they can come here and learn a different skill,” he said. “It is paying off for me. I know I will be able to find a career I can enjoy while doing the best job possible.”
Lopez knows a career is waiting for him after graduation. By 2028, Texas is expected to see an 83% increase in technicians in the workforce, according to onetonline.org.
“TSTC is preparing me for a career, and for that I am grateful,” he said.
Registration for the fall semester is underway. Scholarships are available. For more information, visit tstc.edu.