(SWEETWATER, Texas) – Hugo Martinez did not have a career in mind when he started researching his college options.
After looking at Texas State Technical College’s Electromechanical Technology program on the internet, Martinez, of Mason, said he could have many job opportunities in the future.
“I always wanted to do something with my hands, and this program offers many opportunities for me,” he said. “I know when I earn my degree, I will be able to make decent money and a decent life for myself.”
Martinez, in his second semester of the Associate of Applied Science degree program, said his job opportunities will be plentiful.
“I could work at a sand mine, in the oil field or a dealership,” he said. “The opportunities are endless with this degree.”
During his first semester, Martinez said he was able to learn different equipment but enjoyed the robotics curriculum the most.
“I did not expect that we would be able to fix the robots in class,” he said. “I thought we would only program them. Once we started working on the robots and the other equipment, it was not that hard to understand. I have found every aspect of this program interesting.”
Instructor Arnoldo Soto said Martinez is a student who makes sure he understands what is expected of him.
“He works very well with his hands and comprehends the information we are providing him,” Soto said. “He is going to make a good employee when he completes his degree.”
Martinez credits Soto and his other instructors for helping him understand each project.
“They know a lot about the things we need to know,” he said. “They will walk us through each aspect of the project and show us what needs to be done. I like to see how things are done and not just read it in the book. The hands-on approach we have is the best way to learn.”
Martinez said he hopes he can work with his father at a sand mine in Kermit after he completes the program. His father helped him research the program and pointed him to TSTC.
“My father told me it would be the best way to have a career,” he said. “He has told me many times that he is glad that I came to school.”
Martinez said earning a degree will help him find employment and be successful.
“Having my degree will give me a better chance for a job, and I will be able to do it even faster because employers will know I am trained for the position,” he said.
People looking for a career option that could lead them anywhere should look into Electromechanical Technology, Martinez said.
“I hope more people look at this program,” he said. “If you do not know what you want to do, but enjoy working with your hands and on electronic equipment, this program will give you multiple opportunities to make a living.”
According to onetonline.org, the need for electromechanical and mechatronic technologists and technicians in Texas will increase by 13% by 2028. The website states that the median salary for a technician in the state is $52,010.
In addition to the associate degree program, TSTC offers a certificate of completion in Electromechanical Technology. Both are available exclusively at the Sweetwater campus.
For more information about TSTC, visit tstc.edu.