three men talking in a room

(ABILENE, Texas) – Some Texas State Technical College students learned during a recent employer spotlight that they may find a successful career with NexTier Completion Solutions, an oil field service provider.

NexTier representatives Jim Jenson and Mike Johnson discussed the company’s job opportunities with Electrical Power and Controls program and Industrial Systems program students. Many of the students visited with the NexTier team following the presentation.

“The programs that you are going through right now are the perfect fit for our industry,” Jenson, a maintenance manager, said. “I know of a few of our employees who graduated from TSTC years ago.”

NexTier, which is owned by Patterson-UTI Energy Inc., has locations throughout Texas. Johnson, a technical and military school recruiter, participated in TSTC’s spring Industry Job Fair and returned to the Abilene campus to provide more information. 

“The hours are good, but the days are long,” Johnson told the students. “There is always the opportunity to move up in the company, beginning from day one. The progress you make is going to be determined by you.”

Jenson said employees in his Midland maintenance facility usually work 12-hour days, beginning with a safety meeting and work assignments.

“No one day will be the same,” he said.

Both men provided some work advice for the students, no matter where they are employed.

“Most of our supervisors are former military. Being late drives us nuts,” Johnson said. “If the workday begins at 8 a.m., that means to have tools in hand, ready to work. Your time is the work.”

Johnson also told students to respect their co-workers, especially if they will be late to begin a shift.

“Do not be that person who will no-call, no-show,” he said. “Make sure if you are going to be late, call who will replace you. They will in turn give you the same courtesy. In our business, for every hour of fracking we lose, we lose $100,000. Don’t be late.”

When asked about degree requirements for employment with NexTier, Johnson said there is not one in particular.

“But by having a degree or certificate, does that set you apart from others? Yes, it does,” he said.

NexTier officials, along with all Patterson-UTI companies, have tried to dispel an oil field stigma, according to Johnson.

“We know that when the oil field gets slow, people are laid off,” he said. “We want you to get paid, so we will send you to our other sites so you can work. Well-paid employees are going to stay longer.”

TSTC offers an Associate of Applied Science degree in Electrical Power and Controls in a hybrid format, combining virtual learning with in-person, hands-on lab work. In addition to the Abilene campus, TSTC’s campuses in Fort Bend County, North Texas and Waco offer the program.

In the Industrial Systems program in Abilene, TSTC offers an Associate of Applied Science degree in Industrial Systems – Mechanical Specialization and several certificates of completion.

Both programs are part of TSTC’s Money-Back Guarantee. If participating students do not find a job in their career field within six months after graduation, they will receive a refund of their tuition. 

Registration for TSTC’s fall semester is underway. Learn more at

tstc logo